Setting the scene...
Carlisle United v Tranmere Rovers
Saturday 15th September
Tranmere Rovers are back on the road this Saturday when Micky Mellon’s side head to Carlisle United for a League Two encounter at Brunton Park.
Rovers will aim to extend their unbeaten run in the fourth-tier to five games, following on from last weekend’s 1-1 draw at home to Colchester United.
James Norwood’s seventh goal of the season had the hosts in front at half-time but Harry Pell’s equaliser on the hour meant Rovers had to settle for a point at Prenton Park, a result which sees Tranmere in 14th heading into Saturday’s fixture.
Standing in Tranmere’s way are a Carlisle team who have started the season impressively under new boss John Sheridan, sitting fourth.
Carlisle continued their good start with a hard-fought 2-1 win away at Cambridge United last Saturday, with strikes from Richie Bennett and Ashley Nadesan sealing three points.
With the exception of the long term injuries to Liam Ridehalgh, Evan Gumbs and Ritchie Sutton, Micky Mellon will have a fully fit squad to pick from.
Adam Buxton is now in full training and builidng up his fitness whilst Franklyn Akammadu also returned to training after a slight groin strain.
The Cumbrians season so far...
Under the stewardship of recently-appointed boss Sheridan, who replaced Keith Curle in the Brunton Park hotseat.
And the decision to bring in Mancunian Sheridan appears to be a shrewd one, with the former Oldham Athletic manager leading Carlisle to four wins from their opening seven games of the new League Two season, picking up 13 points along the way.
United have won four of their last five matches and find themselves just outside the automatic promotion places on goal difference below Exeter City.
After Saturday’s comeback win at Cambridge, the Blues will be hopeful of continuing their positive early form in front of the Brunton Park faithful, where they are unbeaten at home so far this term.
One to watch
Oldham-born striker Richie Bennett will be aiming to be a thorn in the side of Mellon’s men when the two teams meet at Brunton Park on Saturday.
The 27-year-old has enjoyed a rise rapid to the EFL over the past four years.
Beginning his career in the lower reaches of non-league level with Ashton United and later Cheshire club Northwich Victoria, he was signed up by National League side Barrow in July 2016.
During his one season at Holker Street, Bennett scored 15 goals in 43 games as the side finished seventh in the National League.
His form attracted the interest of Carlisle, with Bennett moving across Cumbria in July 2017.
Last term, Bennett netted three league strikes in just 19 starts.
But under Sheridan he has become one of the Blues leading lights, scoring three times as Carlisle aim to mount a promotion challenge.
Rovers are set to be backed by brilliant travelling support once again in Cumbria on Saturday.
Tranmere fans will be located in the Pioneer Foods Stand for the fixture.
Ticket details can be found here:
Referee Matthew Donohue will take charge of this weekend's game in the north of England.
The Manchester based official is a familiar face to Rovers fans, and last season officated in the National League, before earning a promotion to the EFL for the 2018/19 campaign.
Last season, Donohue refereed three Rovers matches, and Mellon's men won them all with two victories against Halifax and a 1-0 triumph at home to Bromley.
Graeme Fyvie and Helen Byrne are the assistant referees whilst Paul Brown is the fourth official.
Can’t make it to Brunton Park on Saturday? Don’t fear as there are several ways you can keep up with Rovers’ progress.
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.