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Match Previews

Morecambe Preview

Andy Phillips previews the visit of Morecambe.

4 January 2018

Michael White
Russell Slade

TOWN look to get back to winning ways when they host Morecambe at Blundell Park on Saturday afternoon (3pm).

The Mariners had a tricky festive period with defeats against Accrington Stanley and Crewe Alexandra, as well as suffering a number of injuries to keen players, so they will be hoping to start getting back on track with the visit of the struggling Shrimpers.

Mills and Jones in contention

It is hoped that Zak Mills (knee) and Sam Jones (ankle) will be in contention to play at the weekend after they missed the New Years Day defeat to Crewe.

Danny Collins should return to the defence after being rested for that game, whilst Mitch Rose and Jamille Matt should be over knocks.

Chris Clements is also back with the team after returning from a loan spell at Barrow, so will give Russell Slade an extra option in midfield should he require it.

Shrimpers looking to get out of trouble

It has been a difficult season for Moreambe so far, with them struggling for consistency throughout the campaign.

They come into Saturday's fixture in 21st place and on the back of a local derby against Accrington Stanley that was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch, so it will be their first game in over a week and since the turn of the year.

Boss Jim Bentley has been in charge since 2011 now and is one of the longest serving managers in the EFL, establishing Morecambe in the league since that time. He has a very experienced squad at his disposal, with 38-year-old Kevin Ellison always going strong for the side.

A goalless draw last time out

The last time the two sides met was a goalless draw in difficult conditions back in October, and both sets of fans will be hoping for a more lively encounter this time around.

Town have beaten Morecambe three times in 12 meetings in the past, the last of which was a 2-0 victory on the opening day of last season through goals from former loanee Kayden Jackson and Ben Davies.

The Shrimpers have won on three occasions, whilst the sides have drawn on no less than six times over the years.

Managers in summary

Paul Wilkinson: “It’s not going to be easy because Morecambe are a strong team, they’ve picked up lately, and like every game in this league you’ve got to be at your best. Last time was probably one of the hardest games weather-wise that we’ve had all season, but on the day we thought that we did well. We ground out a point and it’s going to be one of those games tomorrow. It’s going to be a tough game, there isn’t going to be a lot in it and it’s going to be one that we’ll have to be ready for.”


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