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Match Previews

Sky Bet League 1 weekend preview

15 August 2014

We preview this weekend's Sky Bet League 1 matches

Bristol City v Colchester United

The Robins: It’s been a mixed first week in the 2014/15 season for Steve Cotterill’s men. An impressive 2-1 win at Sheffield United last Saturday was followed by a 2-1 defeat in the Capital One Cup Round 1, at the hands of Sky Bet League 2 outfit Oxford United.

The U’s: Colchester kicked-off their Sky Bet League 1 campaign with a 2-2 draw at home to Oldham Athletic, before being comprehensively beaten 4-0 at the hands of Charlton Athletic in the Cup.

Level: When these two teams met in 2013/14, both games ended in a stalemate; 2-2 at Colchester and 1-1 at Ashton Gate.

Chesterfield v Rochdale

The Spireites: Paul Cook’s men pulled off the result of the opening weekend in Sky Bet League 1, winning 2-1 at Leyton Orient. They followed this up by taking Sky Bet Championship side Huddersfield Town to extra-time in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday, eventually succumbing 5-3.

Dale: Rochdale’s return to the third tier wasn’t quite so enjoyable on the opening day, losing 1-0 at home to Peterborough United. They also haven’t beaten Chesterfield in their past seven clashes.

Ditto: These teams were relegated to League 2 alongside each other in 2011/12, before being promoted back to Sky Bet League 1 together last term.

Coventry City v Sheffield United

The Sky Blues: Two defeats in the first week doesn’t make good reading for Coventry fans. Conceding in the last minute at Bradford City saw them lose 3-2 in Yorkshire, and they were then beaten 2-1 by Cardiff City in the Capital One Cup.

The Blades: Bounced back from opening-day defeat at home to Bristol City with a 2-1 win over Sky Bet League 2 Mansfield Town in the Capital One Cup. Simply need to score more away goals this season; in 2013/14 they only netted 17 times in 23 outings.

Inseparable: These clubs have met 57 times in competitive matches. Coventry have won 19, Sheffield United have won 19, and there have been 19 draws.

To read more about the clubs’ head-to-head record, click here

Crawley Town v Swindon Town

The Reds: Despite making 17 summer signings, John Gregory’s team have hit the ground running in 2014/15 with two 1-0 wins. An impressive victory away at Barnsley in Sky Bet League 1 was followed by knocking Ipswich Town out of the Capital One Cup.

The Robins: Have also picked up two wins from two, but will be looking to address their away form from last season. They won just five from 23 away from the County Ground in 2013/14, ultimately costing them a Play-Off place.

Reminder: This fixture in 2013/14 finished goalless, and marked Richie Barker’s final game in charge of Crawley.

Crewe Alexandra v Barnsley

The Railwaymen: Having beaten Barnsley 2-0 in the Capital One Cup Round 1 on Tuesday, Crewe now welcome the Tykes to Gresty Road for a Sky Bet League 1 meeting. They lost 2-1 to Fleetwood Town last Saturday.

The Tykes: Following Championship relegation last term, Barnsley haven’t started well; that defeat to Crewe coming after a 1-0 loss to Crawley in The League. Danny Wilson will be craving three points, but they have lost to Crewe six games in a row, conceding twice each time.

London buses: These two sides hadn’t met for six years before Tuesday’s cup clash, but will now play each other twice in five days. It will be their first League meeting in 12 years.

Doncaster Rovers v Port Vale

Rovers: Like Crawley, Doncaster have enjoyed a perfect start to the 2014/15 campaign, without conceding. A solid 3-0 victory away at fellow relegated side Yeovil Town has put them top of the table, and that was backed-up by a 1-0 success at York City in the Capital One Cup.

The Valiants: A 1-1 draw with Walsall on the opening day was routine, before Micky Adams’ men let rip at home to Hartlepool United on Tuesday, winning 6-2; Ben Williamson scored a hat-trick within the opening 18 minutes.

Donny domination: Doncaster have won their past four meetings with Vale, with an aggregate scoreline of 8-3.

Gillingham v Yeovil Town

The Gills: Just like Crewe and Barnsley, these two teams will again lock horns after a Capital One Cup clash in midweek. That was won by Gillingham, 2-1, going some way to make up for a 4-2 drubbing at Milton Keynes Dons last weekend, a game in which they were 2-0 up.

The Glovers: Manager Gary Johnson is confident that his squad can return to form during their trip to Gillingham after two home defeats in a week, to Doncaster and Gillingham. They’ve conceded five goals and scored one.

Relegation form: The Sky Bet League 1 season may only be one game in, but both these sides sit in the relegation zone going into the second round of fixtures.

Notts County v Fleetwood Town

The Magpies: Notts County were much improved under Shaun Derry last season and followed that up last Saturday with an impressive 1-1 draw at Deepdale against Preston North End. However, they were comfortably seen off 3-0 by Sheffield Wednesday in the Cup.

Cod Army: Fleetwood’s first ever game in the third tier of English football was a successful one, beating Crewe 2-1. They then took Sky Bet Championship side Rotherham United to extra-time in the First Round of the Capital One Cup in what has been a solid start to 2014/15.

One to watch: It will be interesting to see whether Fleetwood's Jamie Proctor gets a place in the starting XI this week. Against Crewe last Saturday, he came on as a half-time substitute before setting up their first goal and scoring the second.

Oldham Athletic v Leyton Orient

The Latics: Oldham have had a leaky start to 2014/15. They drew 2-2 with Colchester in Sky Bet League 1 then lost 3-0 to Middlesbrough in the Cup.

The O's: Were on the wrong end of a surprise result last Saturday, losing 2-1 at home to Chesterfield. They were then involved in a thriller in midweek, edging past Plymouth Argyle 6-5 on penalties following a 3-3 after extra-time.

Stalemate: These two have drawn 1-1 in each of their past three meetings, with a goal in each half.

Peterborough United v Milton Keynes Dons

Posh: Peterborough had a mixed start last weekend. Despite seeing off Rochdale 1-0, centre-back Gaby Zakuani and Jack Baldwin picked up lengthy injuries. They then went down 1-0 in a surprise defeat at Portsmouth in the Capital One Cup.

The Dons: Going 2-0 down to Gillingham last Saturday was the wake-up call MK needed. They went on to win 4-2, then beat AFC Wimbledon 3-1 in the Capital One Cup, being rewarded with a Second Round tie at home to Manchester United, rounding off a good week for Karl Robinson's men.

Rivalry: In the past 10 years, these two teams have met 17 times. Posh have won eight, the Dons six, alongside three draws.

Scunthorpe United v Preston North End

Iron: Scunthorpe have a tough start to the Sky Bet League 1 campaign, with games against Fleetwood, Yeovil and Walsall following this weekend. Three points at home will be key, after a 3-1 defeat at Swindon Town last weekend.

The Lilywhites: Preston had the second-best defensive record in Sky Bet League 1 last term, conceding only 20 goals in 23 matches. They drew 1-1 with Notts County in their opening game, and then beat Rochdale 2-0 in the Cup.

Sixth time lucky: Scunthorpe are winless against Preston in five meetings. They last met in the 2012/13 campaign, when the Lilywhites scored three times in both matches.

Walsall v Bradford City

The Saddlers: Drew 1-1 at Port Vale last weekend and then saw off Southend United, of Sky Bet League 2, with a 2-1 victory at Roots Hall. They'll want to find the form they possessed at the start of last term, when they won their first three.

The Bantams: James Hanson’s last-minute winner secured three points for Phil Parkinson’s men against Coventry last Saturday, backed-up by a 1-0 success at Morecambe in the Capital One Cup. 

Goals: These two sides haven’t played out a goalless draw since April 1985. They’ve gone 17 games without a 0-0.

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