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Match Previews

Sky Bet League 2 weekend preview

15 August 2014

We preview this weekend's Sky Bet League 2 matches

Burton Albion v Dagenham and Redbridge

The Brewers: Won 1-0 at Oxford United on the opening day then toppled Wigan Athletic in the Capital One Cup, coming from behind to win 2-1. That will give them momentum but you can guarantee manager Gary Rowett is guarding against complacency.

The Daggers: It has been quite a week for Wayne Burnett's men. They lost 3-0 at home to Morecambe on the opening day before being involved in an energy-zapping 6-6 draw over 120 minutes with Brentford in the Capital One Cup, which they eventually lost 4-2 on penalties.



Three-six-nine: The head-to-head record between these two reads three wins for Burton, six draws, and nine wins for Dagenham.

Cheltenham Town v Accrington Stanley

The Robins: Upset the odds by beating Bury away last weekend, which saw goalkeeper Trevor Carson named in the Football League Team of the Week. It hasn't been plain sailing since then; they lost 2-0 at Brighton in the Cup and had midfielder Asa Hall ruled out for six weeks.

Stanley: Two defeats in the first week, against Southend and Leeds, haven't got Accrington started on the right note but striker James Gray, who scored at Elland Road, believes there's positives to be had.

On the road: Accrington have won on their past two visits to Cheltenham. They were 3-0 winners at Whaddon Road in 2012/13 before triumphing 2-1 in January.

Hartlepool United v Bury

Pools: It hasn't been a great week for Hartlepool either, losing 1-0 to Stevenage last weekend before being thumped 6-2 at Port Vale in the Capital One Cup. Tommy Miller could make his first competitive Pools appearance at Victoria Park in over 13 years.

The Shakers: Also experienced two defeats during the opening week, against Cheltenham and Bolton – the latter after extra-time in the Cup. They must improve their away form from last season when they won just five from 23 on the road.

Just the three: Hartlepool drew just three of 23 matches at home in 2013/14 so don't expect a stalemate.

Luton Town v AFC Wimbledon

The Hatters: Made a winning return to The League by winning 1-0 at Carlisle, before a 2-1 defeat at home to Swindon on Tuesday. Their home form in 2013/14 was scintillating, winning 18 of 23, scoring 64 times.

The Dons: Picked up a point in a 1-1 draw with Shrewsbury last Saturday before losing to Milton Keynes Dons in the Capital One Cup, in a mirror of their first two results last term. Wimbledon haven't scored against Luton in three meetings, stretching back to February 2010.

League football back at the Kenny: This will be the first Football League match at Kenilworth Road since Saturday 25th April 2009 when the Hatters drew 1-1 with Rochdale.

Mansfield Town v Oxford United

The Stags: Two defeats in a week as well as a few injuries suffered means Mansfield have had a far from ideal start. Ollie Palmer, Liam Hearn and Martin Riley are all doubtful.

The U's: Did the double over Mansfield last term, scoring three goals in each meeting. They were beaten on the opening weekend by Burton but caused a shock in the Capital One Cup by winning 2-1 at Bristol City.



Morecambe v Newport County

The Shrimps: Did the double over Newport last season including an impressive 4-1 at the Globe Arena in March. They are the Sky Bet League 2 table-toppers after a 3-0 opening-day win against Dagenham.

The Exiles: Justin Edinburgh's men will be seeking revenge after their two defeats to Morecambe last term. They were defeated 2-0 by Wycombe on home soil last Saturday and then lost 3-1 to Reading in the Capital One Cup.

New acquaintance: This will be just the third time these two sides have met.

Plymouth Argyle v Exeter City

The Pilgrims: A 1-0 loss to Cambridge was followed by a penalty defeat to League 1 Leyton Orient after a 3-3 draw in the Capital One Cup. Manager John Sheridan was proud of his players after that defeat to the O's and has said this weekend's game is “for the supporters”.

Read Sheridan's pre-match thoughts by clicking here

The Grecians: Drew 1-1 with Portsmouth on day one and then lost 2-0 to Bournemouth. Exeter will be buoyant, though, after their transfer embargo was lifted.

Near-neighbours: This will be the 58th Devon Expressway Derby. Plymouth have won the game 30 times, compared to Exeter's 23 victories. The game has ended level on 25 occasions.

Portsmouth v Cambridge United

Pompey: Following that draw with Exeter, Portsmouth saw off the challenge of Peterborough in the Cup, winning 1-0. They remain unbeaten in The League since a 3-0 defeat to Rochdale in March.



The U's: In the 12 times they have met, Cambridge have only ever beaten Pompey once, in March 1978, but they go into the weekend after winning 1-0 against Plymouth on their return to The League. Josh Coulson was the goalscoring hero.

We meet again: These two haven't clashed since 2000 but the past four ties between the two have been in the League Cup. The most recent League clash was a Division 1 game way back in March 1993.

Shrewsbury Town v Tranmere Rovers

The Shrews: A 2-2 draw at Wimbledon was followed by a confidence-boosting 1-0 Cup victory against Championship club Blackpool. Striker James Collins was the only League 2 player to score twice on the opening weekend.

Rovers: A low-key start to the season has seen them draw with York and lose 1-0 to Nottingham Forest. They did the double over Shrewsbury last tern, winning 1-0 away and 2-1 at home.

Southend United v Stevenage

The Blues: Got off to a winning start at Accrington but lost in the Cup to Walsall. They will be aiming to continue their home form from last term that saw them win 11, draw seven and lost just five at Roots Hall.

Boro: Like Southend, Graham Westley's men won 1-0 on the opening Saturday before bowing out in the Cup. Stevenage haven't won on the road since a 3-2 success at Bradford in March.

Fourth time lucky: Stevenage are yet to beat Southend. The Blues have won two of the three meetings, with the other ending 1-1.

Wycombe Wanderers v Carlisle United

The Chairboys: Got the season off to the perfect start by winning 2-0 at Newport County but lost 1-0 at Millwall in midweek. Must improve home form from last season when they had a record of six wins, six draws and 11 defeats.

The Cumbrians: Graham Kavanagh would have envisaged a better start for his side after watching them lose 1-0 to Luton last weekend and 2-0 to Derby in midweek, both at home. Now they go on the road in search of their first away win since February.

Level pegging: The last three meetings between these two have ended in draws.

York City v Northampton Town

The Minstermen: Drew to York in the season-opener before a 1-0 loss to Doncaster in the Cup. Nigel Worthington's men will take confidence from the fact they have beat Northampton in each of the last three meetings without conceding.

The Cobblers: A highly productive first week to 2014/15 season saw Northampton beat Mansfield before dumping Wolverhampton Wanderers out of the Capital One Cup. They haven't beat York since 2004, however, and scored only 18 goals on the road in 2013/14 – the second-worst in the division.

D'Ath at the double: Midfielder Lawson D'Ath made his Northampton debut as a second-half substitute in midweek and scored twice to help the Cobblers overcome Wolves.


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