Friday, 17 February 2012

League One Weekend Preview, Game 30

Tranmere away tomorrow is our 30th league match of the campaign and presents us with opportunity of reaching the impressive 70 points total. Beyond that we can realistically begin the fevered countdown to promotion and begin chalking off the matches to identify when and where it will be achieved. History repeats itself and it has to be Carlisle away for me, even if the gap and our relentless march suggests it may come sooner.

Having said all that, I see tomorrow as a potential banana skin. Rovers may be languishing too close to the trap-door for comfort but that is due, largely, to their away for. At home they are 5-7-3 and have conceded the fewest numbers of goals at home other than ourselves. They don't score many either, so I predict a very tight game with maybe only a goal in it. If we are to win it we may need a moment of Johnnie Jackson genius.

Here's what the rest are up to...

Chesterfield v Sheffield Wednesday
A derby of sorts and the Spireites are beginning to rise to the fight to avoid the drop. The beauty of this fixture is that they have picked a plum time to be playing the Wendies. The moment of crushing realisation has finally descended upon the northern half of the Sheffield Metropolis and the multi-millions of delusionals were delivered of a moment of genuine insight this week with two successive defeats by Sunday pub teams from villages with populations counted in their hundreds. Oh how it must hurt. I am not sure the Ginger Pele will survive a third defeat in-a-row and with Lee Clarke available, it will be an uncertain time on the Wednesday private jet to Chesterfield. I am loving it and going for the Village eleven.
Prediction; 1-0

Exeter City v Bury
Hard to call but I will plump for the home side here as they have more to play for right now.
Prediction; 2-1

Hartlepool United v Notts County
County should arrive with all the momentum here and they will know that they have every chance of an away win a nervy home side. Hartlepool went down by the only goal at Preston in the week and they are in no immediate danger of relegation.
Prediction; 1-2

Leyton Orient v Scunthorpe United
The O's roller coaster season continued in the week with a good win Dean Court so they will be hoping for a second win this week to bring some stability to recent results.
Prediction; 2-0

MK Dons v Oldham Athletic
Whilst I saw little cutting edge from MK in the week, there was plenty to acknowledge; the passing, the movement, the composure and the confidence. Should be too much for Oldham and Alan Smith is due a goal.
Prediction; 2-0

Rochdale v AFC Bournemouth
Rochdale look fatally wounded and Bournemouth should take full advantage as they seek to atone for a home slip against the O's.
Prediction; 1-3

Sheffield United v Preston North End
Look away Preston fans. Sheffield United appear to be on the verge of seizing the second hot seat. Their excellent victory at Huddersfield has caused a mini earthquake in Yorkshire Minor and Blades fans will have been whooping up the home loss by city rivals on the same night. With games in hand to come, the Blades just need to win the next few games and they will create a breakaway gap. I am reminded of the Valley announcers over-generous end-of-match comments that we would see them again at the Valley next year - he may be right. Preston certainly don't look capable at the moment of stopping the train.
Prediction; 3-0

Tranmere Rovers v Charlton Athletic
Deep breaths here. Our away following will be relatively tiny for this one, maybe as low as 300. Rovers may rise to the occasion and give us a very tight game. I can't see us continuing to collect wins and draws all season and we are due another reversal. I fear with two home games to come in the next week, it may come here.
Prediction; 1-0

Walsall v Wycombe Wanderers
Wycombe's glass chin was cracked by Yeovil Town in the week and I expect the Saddlers to deliver another big blow tomorrow.
Prediction; 3-1

Yeovil Town v Colchester United
Fresh from their triumph at Wycombe, a great opportunity for Yeovil to put some distance between themselves and relegation. I am guessing they will take it.
Prediction; 2-0

Brentford v Carlisle United
Monday night match on Sky Sports One. Carlisle are back on the fringe of the play-offs and a win here would effectively finish the Bees season. Uwe Rosler must have expected more this year.
Prediction; 1-2

If you are making the trip to the Wirral tomorrow, I salute you and will be glued to the commentary, so hopefully you have plenty to shout about. Come on you Reeeeddddddsss!

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