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Five things: Storylines to look out for on Matchday 12

6 October 2017

There's a heavily reduced EFL schedule this weekend due to the international break, but there's still more than enough action to sink your teeth into. Here are five storylines to look out for this weekend...

EFL on Sky Sports

Two of this weekend's EFL fixtures will be screened live on Sky Sports, with a Sky Bet League Two meeting between Barnet and Coventry City getting things under way at 12:30pm on Saturday lunchtime.

The hosts were founded in 1888, five years after the Sky Blues, who formed 134 years ago. However, despite years of football history between them, this will be the first competitive meeting between the pair.

The following day, at 2:30pm, it's over to Sky Bet League One, for Portsmouth versus Gillingham. It's the first EFL clash between the two since 2002/03, and the visitors have never recorded victory at Fratton Park, losing 11 and drawing four of their 15 trips.

Monthly Award winners

Two of September's Monthly Award winners are in line to feature in those televised matches, with Barnet's Shaquile Coulthirst and Portsmouth's Brett Pitman taking the respective Player honours for League Two and League One.

On to the bosses, and Paul Hurst takes his unbeaten Shrewsbury Town side to Walsall as they bid to make it 12 games unbeaten. The Shrews haven't won at the home of the Saddlers since 1993.

Kevin Nolan had a stunning September with Notts County, and they host bottom club Forest Green Rovers, looking to bounce back from last week's derby defeat and keep their place at the top of the table.

Legends return to Vale Park

Port Vale have become the latest club to fill the managerial vacancy at Vale Park, and they've reached out to two club legends to guide them back up the Sky Bet League Two table.

Neil Aspin spent a decade with the Valiants throughout the nineties, and he has left his role at National League side Gateshead to take the reins. He'll be joined by Vale's longest-serving manager, John Rudge, who was in charge from 1983 to 1999. Rudge comes in as Director of Football.

It's familiar territory for the pair in their opening game – the new era begins at Vale Park, where Grimsby visit in an EFL fixture for the first time since 2009.

All or nothing

As we approach Matchday 12, two sides in Sky Bet League One have still yet to come away from a game sharing the spoils.

Rotherham United have won six and lost five with nothing in between, but they visit Rochdale this weekend - their five draws this term is a divisional high.

Bristol Rovers go the opposite way, triumphing in five and slipping to six defeats. They are also on their travels, visiting a Northampton Town side who haven't found the net in their previous four EFL outings.

Leaving it late

When it comes to late goals, Luton Town are second only to Notts County when it comes to finding the net in the last 10 minutes of games.

The Hatters have scored six and conceded one from the 81st minute onwards, four of which have led to vital extra points. Two late strikes salvaged a draw at Mansfield Town in August, and a couple of stoppage-time efforts capped a remarkable turn around at Wycombe Wanderers last month.

Next up is a visit to Accrington Stanley, where they have scored 90th-minute goals in each of their last two EFL visits. Whatever you do, don't leave early!



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