Setting the scene…
Tranmere Rovers v Colchester United Saturday 8th September 2018 Prenton Park 3pm kick-off
Tranmere Rovers will aim to extend their unbeaten home league run since returning to the EFL this weekend when Colchester United visit Prenton Park.
Rovers earned a hard-fought point away at Northampton Town last weekend with James Norwood netting for Micky Mellon’s men in a 1-1 Sixfields draw.
Rovers were on the wrong end of a seven-goal thriller in the Checkatrade Trophy on Tuesday night, losing 4-3 to Crewe Alexandra at home.
Tranmere currently sit 11th in the fourth tier after collecting nine points from their opening six games, and welcome a Colchester side who are fourth, a point outside the automatic promotion places.
Adam Buxton returned from injury against David Artell’s Railwaymen and is back in the first team squad for this weekend.
Zoumana Bakayogo also made his first start after a spell on the sidelines in the Checkatrade Trophy against Crewe, and he will be pushing for a place in the starting line up on Saturday.
Long term absentees Liam Ridehalgh and Ritchie Sutton will miss the game through injury.
The U's season so far
Positioned just below the automatic promotion positions, Colchester have started the season in fine form.
Managed by former Tranmere stalwart John McGreal, the Birkenhead-born former defender made 195 appearances over a nine-year period at his local side.
McGreal, aged 46, brings his side to the Wirral looking to continue their positive start to the campaign.
Last time out in League Two, Colchester were 3-1 winners away at Cheltenham Town, with Luke Norris’ first-half brace added to by Harry Pell’s 88th minute penalty to complete a big win in Gloucestershire.
From their opening six outings, Colchester have attained 11 points and occupy fourth position following their bright start.
An opening day goalless stalemate with Notts County was followed up by a 2-0 win over Port Vale and putting six past Crewe, either side of a point at Mansfield Town.
Their only defeat to date this season came at home, losing 2-1 to Northampton Town.
One to watch
Striker Luke Norris has been in emphatic form since his summer move from Swindon Town.
Norris has found the back of the net on four occasions so far this term, as the U’s look to build upon a positive opening to the 2018/19 campaign.
The 25-year-old Stevenage-born player began his career in the youth set-ups of Hitchin Town and Brentford, before turning professional with the Bees.
Loan spells with Boreham Wood, Northampton Town and Dagenham and Redbridge followed before he left Griffin Park for Gillingham permanently in July 2014.
Norris spent two seasons in Kent, turning out 70 times for the Gills, scoring 14 goals prior to a 2016 transfer to Swindon Town.
Two years at the County Ground saw the marksman strike 17 goals in 74 appearances in Wiltshire He linked up at the Colchester Community Stadium earlier in the summer.
Tickets for Saturday’s fixture with high-flying Colchester are available through the Club’s official ticket website.
For full information on how to buy, please click here. By clicking through, you can also see ticket information for our upcoming games in League Two.
The referee in charge
Shrewsbury based referee Robert Lewis will take charge of this weekend’s match at Prenton Park.
So far this season, Lewis has taken charge of five matches, distributing 16 yellows and one red card, to MK Dons’ Mathieu Baudry in their 0-0 draw in League Two at Crewe.
The last time Lewis took charge of a Tranmere match was February 2015, when Rovers drew 1-1 away at Newport County, with Rory Donnelly on the score sheet.
If you can’t make it to Prenton Park for the visit of Colchester United, then don’t worry as we have you covered!
Full match commentary of the fixture will be exclusively available live from Rovers’ home ground!
You can now sign up to Tranmere Rovers’ iFollow, which allows access to extended highlights and interviews with manager Micky Mellon and a player, after the game.
To sign up, click here
Alternatively, you can follow the action through our social media channels below, with full text coverage during the fixture, followed by a match report.