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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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05 January 2019 Venue The People's Pension Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

Match pack: Crawley Town (A)

4 January 2019

In form Cheltenham make the journey to West Sussex on Saturday to take on Crawley Town at The People’s Pension Stadium (kick-off: 3pm).

Seven unbeaten in all competitions, Michael Duff’s Robins are enjoying another good run, and it’s a 17th against 18th clash this weekend that’s all set to serve up a tightly fought contest.

Both the Robins and Crawley claimed three points on New Year’s Day, with Duff’s side winning at Yeovil and Crawley defeating Colchester United.

Travelling fans may get the chance to see new loan arrival Cameron Pring make his debut if he’s included in the matchday squad.

Team news

The injury picked up in Tuesday’s game rules Johnny Mullins out. Sean Long also remains out of contention and Ryan Broom is not expected to feature. Will Boyle is another absentee for Saturday.

Tyrone Barnett returns to face a club who once sold him to Peterborough United for £1.1 million.

Watch Michael Duff’s pre-match press conference:

Opposition

An impressive win over Colchester on New Year’s Day ended a run of five games without a win for Saturday’s opponents.

Despite having Joe McNerney sent off in the first half, the Red Devils scored two second half goals through Luke Gambin to earn a 2-0 win. As a result they sit 17th in the division – just a point ahead of the Robins going into the weekend.

Italian Gabriele Cioffi is in charge at The People’s Pension Stadium. The former Birmingham City assistant is in his first managerial job in England having previously taken charge of US Gavorrano in his homeland.

Leading goal scorer Ollie Palmer has 11 goals to his name so far this season and is back available from suspension for Saturday. He’s part of a front line that also includes ex-Leeds United man Dominic Poleon and experienced wide man Filipe Morais.

Crawley include former Robins loanee Josh Payne in their squad, while they also boast a number of experienced heads in the shape of midfield duo Dannie Bulman one-time Chelsea youngster Jimmy Smith.

Last time at Crawley

There were goals aplenty the last time the Robins travelled to Crawley in March of last season. There were eight goals scored with the three points ending up on their way back to Cheltenham, courtesy of a 5-3 win.

Mo Eisa and Harry Pell both scored doubles in front of an attendance of 2,172, while Will Boyle added a fifth.

The Robins had led 5-1 at one point, though Crawley did net two consolation goals through Panutche Camara and Lewis Young.

Revisit the highlights from the club’s last away game at Saturday’s venue:

Tickets

It’s pay on the day at The People’s Pension Stadium. Ticket prices for the game are:

  The People's Pension Stand (seating) The KR-L Stand (terracing)
Adult £20 £16
Senior 65+ £15 £12
Under 21 £13 £11
Under 18 £10 £10
Under 16 £4 £4
Under 11 £1 £1

Fans who have booked on the supporters coach travelling to the game are reminded that the coach leaves the Jonny-Rocks Stadium at 10.15am.

Coverage

For team news and match updates follow @CTFCofficial on Twitter. You can also check out goal and score updates on the club’s Facebook, as well as full reaction to the result on the club website after the game.

Listen to radio commentary through the Robins iFollow service at ctfc.com/ifollow.

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Match Reports

Full-time: Crawley Town 1, Robins 0 – report

5 January 2019

Cheltenham Town's seven-match unbeaten run came to an end on a frustrating afternoon at the People's Pension Stadium.

But the Robins can count themselves unlucky to not come away from this encounter with at least a share of the spoils.

In the end, Ollie Palmer's soft first half penalty settled a match of few clear cut chances on a chilly afternoon in West Sussex.

It wasn't a bad performance by any means but on the day, Michael Duff's side lacked a little bit of quality to convert their promising play into goals.

The Robins enjoyed the lion's share of possession in the first half but it was the home side that carried the lead into the break thanks to Ollie Palmer's spot kick.

The day was further marred by a nasty looking injury to Nigel Atangana, who was carried off on a stretcher 15 minutes from time after an innocuous incident inside the Crawley penalty area.

Duff made two changes to the side that thrashed Yeovil Town on New Year's Day.

Defender Cameron Pring was handed his full debut for the club after arriving on loan earlier in the week.

The former Academy development player operated at left wing back with Chris Hussey dropping into the three-man defence in the absence of Johnny Mullins, who was injured at Huish Park five days ago.

Meanwhile in attack, former Crawley Town striker Tyrone Barnett came in at the expense of Luke Varney.

The experienced striker dropped to the bench alongside George Lloyd (recalled from Hereford) and fit again Ryan Broom.

The Robins made a lively start and forced the home into all the early defending although it was Scott Flinders who was eventually called into the first save of the afternoon, dropping down to save from Dominic Poleon.

But Duff's side went on to continue their promising opening to the match and created a string of decent chances, but frustratingly they found themselves behind at the interval.

Jacob Maddox saw his effort held with 20 minutes on the clock, meeting Hussey's cross from the left with a firm enough header but straight at goalkeeper Glenn Morris.

Jordon Forster and Barnett connected with a pair of long Ben Tozer throws, but the first was comfortably caught while the second dropped wide.

Next some nimble play by Alex Addai carved an opening down the left but the striker's end product flew well over the target. Then Maddox blasted over from distance.

But for all their good play before the break, it was Crawley that took the lead with 39 minutes on the clock after Forster was adjudged to have handled the ball as a long ball dropped to Palmer in the box.

The striker took the spot kick himself, sending it down the middle to beat Finders diving to his left.

There was a final chance for Addai, a terrific one after Barnett had sent a ball down the line for the pace striker to match on to.

However his final effort was wild, dragging it well wide of the target.

There were fewer chances after the turnaround and Maddox notched the Robins' first effort, turning and releasing a strike that flew wide of the right post

Poleon had a couple of his own, narrowly missing the left upright with the first while the second was held by Flinders.

Duff sent on Varney (for Addai) and Broom (Maddox) with 27 minutes remaining but his plans were hampered by an injury to Atangana five minutes later, who went down after turning inside the Crawley box and required lengthy treatment.

Kevin Dawson was pressed into action in the closing stages and shortly afterwards, Broom was presented with a great chance 10 minutes from time but the Welshman smashed his angled effort wide of the near post.

Tozer was also denied in the closing stages, Morris tipping over the centre half's header on an ultimately frustrating afternoon for Michael Duff and his side.

CRAWLEY TOWN (3-5-2): Morris (Gk); Francomb, Connolly, Maguire; Sesay (Young 66), Gambin, Payne (c) (Bulman 86), Camara, Doherty; Palmer, Poleon (Grego-Cox 80). Subs not used: Mersin (Gk), Nathaniel-George, N'Gala.

CHELTENHAM TOWN (3-5-2): Flinders; Forster, Tozer (c), Hussey; Thomas, Clements, Maddox (Broom 63), Atangana (Dawson 72), Pring; Barnett, Addai (Varney 63). Subs not used: Lovett (Gk), Bower, Lloyd, Alcock.

REFEREE: C Sarginson

ATTENDANCE: 2,623 (216 from Cheltenham)

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