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Match Previews

Sky Bet League 2 New Year's Day preview

31 December 2013

Bristol Rovers v Cheltenham Town

Cheltenham Town's 11-match unbeaten run came to an end last time out and they now face lowly Bristol Rovers in Sky Bet League 2's early kick-off on New Year's Day.

The 10th-placed Robins lost 2-1 at home to Mansfield Town, which was their first loss since a 2-1 reverse against Rochdale in mid-October.

Rovers are 21st, a single point above the bottom two, having registered two wins, two draws and two defeats in their last six. The overall head-to-head record between these two reads six wins apiece, with five draws.

Dagenham and Redbridge v AFC Wimbledon

Dagenham and Redbridge will go in search of their first ever victory against AFC Wimbledon when the two meet on New Year's Day.

The Wombles have won three of the past five meetings, with the other two ending level, including the most recent meeting in November.

The 12th-placed Daggers are without a win in four, losing three of those, while AFC Wimbledon haven't won for six matches, since a 4-0 triumph against Portsmouth in mid-November.

Exeter City v Wycombe Wanderers

Exeter City and Wycombe Wanderers meet for the third time this season, at St James Park.

The Chairboys triumphed 2-0 in a Johnstone's Paint Trophy tie in September, while the pair drew 1-1 when they met in late November.

Paul Tisdale's men overcame Torquay United 3-1 last time out, following back-to-back defeats, to climb to 11th. Wycombe lost 1-0 against Newport County on Boxing Day, which was their most recent game.

Fleetwood Town v Accrington Stanley

Fleetwood Town have suffered successive defeats and welcome Accrington Stanley, who have drawn their last two.

The Cod Army have dropped out of the Play-Offs following those two losses, and they've conceded 18 goals at home, the most of any side in the division, ahead of their clash with 18th-placed Stanley.

James Beattie's men overcame Fleetwood 2-0 when the two clubs met in November, with goals from Danny Webber and Kayode Odejayi.

Hartlepool United v Bury

Two of Sky Bet League 2's draw specialists come together in the North East with Hartlepool United entertaining Bury.

Hartlepool have shared the points in four of their last five matches, with a last-gasp win against Morecambe coming in their most recent outing.

The Shakers have drawn five of their last eight, but also triumphed 2-1 on Sunday, against York City.

Mansfield Town v Burton Albion

Mansfield Town ended their 13-match winless run last time out and meet in-form Burton Albion this time around.

The Stags are 19th and overcame Cheltenham 2-1 to table a much-needed three points.

Burton are third having won five of their last seven, drawing the other two. That run of form has seen the Brewers move joint-top of Sky Bet League 2, alongside Scunthorpe and Chesterfield.

Newport County v Oxford United

Newport County and Oxford United come together for just the second time, at Rodney Parade.

The pair drew 0-0 in their first ever meeting, in November, and both hold positions in the Play-Off places, with the U's fifth and the Exiles seventh, separated by a single point.

Newport have won seven of their nine home matches, while Oxford possess the division's best away record, with six wins and four draws from their 10 matches on the road.

Northampton Town v Chesterfield

It's top against bottom at Sixfields with Northampton Town going head-to-head with Chesterfield.

The managerless Cobblers prop up the division with 19 points from their 23 games so far, and they come into their tough New Year's Day challenge after a 0-0 draw at Portsmouth.

Chesterfield have been held to draws in their last two, after back-to-back wins. They're under pressure from Scunthorpe and Burton at the summit, with all three teams on 41 points.

Plymouth Argyle v Torquay United

There's a Devon derby at Home Park, where Plymouth Argyle and Torquay United lock horns.

The last three encounters between these two have ended level, including their most recent clash in November.

Alan Knill's Gulls dropped back into the relegation zone after a 3-1 loss on Sunday, while Plymouth, who are the lowest scorers at home in the division with eight goals, continued their climb up the table with a 1-1 draw with Wimbledon.

Scunthorpe United v Rochdale

Scunthorpe United are Sky Bet League 2's form team and they host Rochdale.

The Iron have notched 17 points from their last seven matches to move joint-top of the division, while Dale are fourth, just a point behind, after successive victories.

The second win of Scunthorpe's recent good run was a 4-0 hammering of Keith Hill's side, and they've lost only once on home soil ahead of this meeting.

Southend United v Portsmouth

Portsmouth haven't overcome Southend since 1996 and the pair meet at Roots Hall on New Year's Day.

Since their 1-0 victory in August of '96, Pompey, who are 17th, have lost the following two games against Southend 2-1, including their clash in November.

But the South Coast club hold the advantage in the overall head-to-head record, with 15 victories to Southend's seven. The sixth-placed Blues have lost once in nine coming into this game.

York City v Morecambe

York City are hovering just above the bottom two ahead of their encounter with Morecambe, who sit just outside the Play-Offs.

The Minstermen have shared the points in seven of their last nine games, including a 0-0 draw with Morecambe, and haven't won since the end of October. They remain out of the relegation zone by goal difference only.

Jim Bentley's Shrimps are on an inconsistent run with three wins and three defeats from their last six. They are only two points adrift of the top seven.

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