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Match Previews

Match Preview: Morecambe v Cheltenham

11 March 2022

The Shrimps host Cheltenham Town at the Mazuma Stadium on Saturday 12 March in Sky Bet League One.

Morecambe head into Saturday’s game looking for a win after settling for a draw on Tuesday night when they travelled to the University of Bolton Stadium. A defensive error from the Trotters left the goal wide open for Cole Stockton to slot in a cross from Phillips, but Böðvarsson’s late strike found its way in the back of the net, rescuing a point for the Ian Evatt’s men.

The Shrimps have played 25 games against the Robins since 2008, with most of those matches taking place in League Two, and a couple of FA Cup clashes. Over the 14 years, Morecambe have won seven, drawn seven and lost 11 times. Last October marked their first meeting in League One which ended in a 3-1 defeat, Phillips’ early equaliser wasn’t enough to take a point as the hosts netted two more goals in the second half.

The Opposition

Cheltenham are currently sitting mid-table and will be looking to bounce back after Tuesday night’s game ended 3-1, playing away from home to MK Dons. Troy Parrott and Mohamed Eisa had the Robins 2-0 down at half time, and a late third goal from Parrott proved the Dons were set to take all three points. Cheltenham continued to fight to the end however, as William Boyle caught a cross and headed the ball into the bottom corner past goalkeeper Jamie Cumming in the 89th minute.

In his player career, manager Michael Duff made over 600 appearances and earned an additional 24 caps for Northern Ireland. His youth career was spent at Darlington before moving to Carterton Town, and it was here that Duff was spotted by a Cheltenham Town scout. The former defender signed for the club in 1996 before heading out on loan to Cirencester Town for one season. Eight years later, Duff made the switch to Burnley, where he continued to play until he retired in 2016, having helped Burnley win the Championship title and promotion to the Premier League. Duff remained at the club for two years, as manager of their reserves team, before being appointed first team manager at Town. Duff led the Club to their first ever automatic promotion from League Two, as they finished the 2020/21 season in first place.

Key Players

Alfie May made his way to The Jonny-Rocks Stadium in January 2020, and is Cheltenham’s top scorer so far this season with 17 goals to his name. The striker began his career in the youth team at Millwall, and a few years after leaving their development phase, he started his senior career at Corinthian. May went on to play for London based club Bromley, as well as semi-professional teams such as VCD Athletic, Farnborough and Hythe Town. In 2016, he had a trial at League Two club Stevenage before turning professional and signing for Doncaster Rovers a few months later, where he helped the club earn promotion to League One.

18-year-old Aaron Ramsey joined Cheltenham in the January transfer window from Aston Villa, where he has spent both his youth and senior career so far. Ramsey came through the ranks at Villa’s Academy and assisted them in winning the FA Youth Cup. The midfielder has also captained England at U19s level and continues to feature for the international youth side.

Matthew Pollock, son of former midfielder Jamie Pollock, began his playing career at Middlesbrough before moving to Leeds United. At 17 years old, he joined Grimsby Town on a scholarship after being scouted playing for his father's team Polton Allstars, the defender turned professional less than a year later. Pollock was signed for Premier League club Watford earlier last year and arrived at The Jonny-Rocks Stadium in August for a season long loan.

Shrimps’ Pre-Match Thoughts

Like the Shrimps, the Robins were also promoted from League Two last season, and Derek Adams says they're enjoying a strong campaign back in the third division.

"Cheltenham have done really well this season," he said.

"Promoted with us last year, they've been able to pick up some really good points, they're nearly safe now and we've got to try and win this game to try and leapfrog the teams above us."

Meet the Officials

Andrew Kitchen will be the man in the middle on Saturday and will be assisted by linesmen Joe Simpson and Gary Hilton. Conor Brown is Fourth Official.

The Durham-based referee has taken charge of 25 games so far this season and handed out 65 yellow cards and just two red cards.

Kitchen has spent two years in the National League before his promotion late last year. He has since taken charge of games in League One and League Two, the Football League Trophy and FA Cup. He is yet to officiate a match for the Shrimps but has previously refereed Cheltenham Town.

Don’t miss a kick with our iFollow coverage

After teaming up with Beyond Radio for the 2021/22 season, supporters will be able to listen to exclusive, full and uninterrupted radio commentary of every single game, home and away, which will be broadcast simultaneously on 103.5FM, 107.5FM and DAB+ digital radio across North Lancashire and South Cumbria as well as on the iFollow Shrimps platform.

Joining host Dave Salmon is the Club's Media Assistant Matt Smith, audio passes are available from as little as £2.50 per match, £4.49 for a monthly pass or £45 for a season pass.

As well as full match commentary, the ‘Shrimps Verdict’ podcast will be available post-match, featuring online, on demand content, including audio match highlights, post-match interviews and reaction, and much more!


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