Sky Bet League Two takes centre stage for our featured game this weekend, as two Play-Off hopefuls go head-to-head in the form of Tranmere Rovers taking on Bristol Rovers.
📅 Match details
Kick-off on the Wirral is 15:00 on Saturday 9 April, with Bristol Rovers making the trip north to Prenton Park.
Referee Marc Edwards will be joined by assistant officials Peter Gooch and Adam Clayton along with fourth official Joe Clarke.
👔 At the helm
Scotsman Micky Mellon is currently in his second spell at Tranmere. Mellon’s first role in management came in the North West at Fleetwood Town, where, in 2012, he secured promotion to the EFL with the Club for the first time in their history.
The 50-year-old joined then-National League Tranmere for his first spell in charge in 2016. During this time, he led Rovers to back-to-back promotions into the Sky Bet League One before being poached by Scottish Premiership side Dundee United in 2020. However, Mellon returned to Tranmere Rovers in the summer of 2021.
With almost 200 matches as a manager under his belt, ex-Manchester City and Queens Park Rangers midfielder Joey Barton is now in his second job in management with Bristol Rovers, after a three-year stint at Fleetwood Town.
In his first season at Highbury, Barton guided the Cod Army to an 11th placed finish and then to a Play-Off place in his second season - ultimately losing out to eventual winners Wycombe Wanderers in the Semi-Final.
Barton left Fleetwood Town in January of the following season and was offered the role at Bristol Rovers just a month later.
🔑 Key men
Now aged 40, former England Under-21 centre back Peter Clarke hasn’t missed a minute of football for the past two seasons at Tranmere Rovers.
The Rovers captain is certainly leading by example and proving that age is very much just a number, having being named the Clubs’ Player of the Season last time around and stepping up once again as one of Tranmere’s key men in 2021/22.
Having missed Bristol Rovers’ last two games through injury, Gas manager Barton will be hoping to have midfielder Antony Evans available for selection for his sides trip to Prenton Park this weekend.
The attacking midfielder Evans joined Bristol Rovers from German side SC Paderborn 07 on last August’s deadline day and has proved a crucial addition to their side ever since.
📈 Form guide
Sitting in seventh and having not tasted victory in three now, with Newport County just outside the Play-Off places by a single point, Tranmere Rovers will be keen to pick up what could prove a vital three points on Saturday come the end of the season.
Bristol Rovers, on the other hand, should come into this fixture full of confidence having won five out of their previous six - the one defeat in this run coming away at Carlisle United after which manager Joey Barton blamed the absence of star man Evans for his sides below par performance.
|The last five|
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