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01 February 2020 Venue Jonny-Rocks Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

Preview: Morecambe (H)

31 January 2020

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New signing Tom Nichols could be in line to make his Cheltenham Town debut on Saturday when Morecambe are the visitors to the Jonny-Rocks Stadium (kick-off: 3pm).

The Shrimps make the trip down the M6 and M5 to Gloucestershire on Saturday and Nichols, who has arrived on loan from Bristol Rovers until the end of the season, could be set to make his first appearance in a Robins shirt.

Saturday's fixture follows a 1-1 draw on the road at Bradford City on Tuesday. The team are determined to follow up a point on the road in West Yorkshire in midweek with another strong performance to keep up pace at the top end of the League Two table.

Tickets are available to buy for the match online and will also be available to purchase on the day from the turnstiles.

Team news

New signing Tom Nichols is set to be included in the squad for the first time after his loan move went through.

Ryan Broom and Reuben Reid are both fit to return if selected, while Luke Varney is also fit and well after his first appearance since November on Tuesday.

George Lloyd has a slight knock which rules him out. Chris Clements has been suffering with an illness.

Watch Michael Duff's press conference looking ahead to the fixture:

Opposition

Saturday's visitors received a welcome boost on Tuesday night as they earned a good away win at Walsall to climb further away from the final relegation spot in League Two.

The result followed a previous 1-1 draw against Cambridge United and an eye-catching 2-1 home win against Port Vale, with the Shrimps determined to drag themselves away from the drop zone in the months ahead.

For many seasons the highly praised Jim Bentley has successfully achieved that feat at the Globe Arena. However now it's ex-Plymouth Argyle boss Derek Adams in charge.

The Scotsman has already boosted his teams ranks in January with some good additions, and he'll be hoping to guide his team to Football League safety in his first few months in position.

Goalkeeper Christoffer Mafoumbi is one of those new faces. He's come in on loan from Blackpool and kept a clean sheet in their win against Walsall on Tuesday, a performance that also included a penalty save.

In front of him their defensive set-up features the much travelled New Zealand international Steven Old. His experience is important in a backline that also includes 19-year-old Ryan Cooney, 23-year-old Sam Lavelle and another 23-year-old in Christian Mbulu. Former Robins left back Jordan Cranston is a likely starter in a full back position.

The Shrimps midfield is well directed by the long serving former Cardiff City man Aaron Wildig.

New addition Toumani Diagouraga is also a big presence in the middle of the park, while former Liverpool youngster Adam Phillips is on loan from Burnley and he offers important energy.

Further up the pitch their forward line includes another new face in Jordan Slew who has returned to League football after a spell in non-league.

Cole Stockton provides a physical presence and AJ Leitch-Smith has plenty of Football League experience from time spent at Crewe Alexandra, Yeovil Town, Port Vale and Shrewsbury.

Morecambe's home record is slightly better than when it comes to their performances on the road this season, but despite that they'll be looking to follow up Tuesday's win on their travels with another good showing on Saturday.

Last season at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium

It was an eventful evening when Cheltenham and Morecambe last met at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium.

In October 2018 Luke Varney scored a brace to help the Robins to a draw in an encounter that saw the experienced striker net deep into stoppage time.

Former Cheltenham left back Jordan Cranston gave Morecambe the lead on 32 minutes, though Varney drew parity shortly before half time with his first of the night.

Rhys Oates then found the bottom corner to help the away side regain the lead, however Varney ensured his team would share the spoils with a last gasp finish inside the box right at the end of second half added time.

Revisit that game with the match highlights from last season:

Tickets

Tickets are available to buy online for the game. They are also on sale from the turnstiles on matchday.

The ticket office will be open ahead of kick-off selling tickets and away travel for upcoming fixtures, including the trip to Scunthorpe United on Saturday 8 February.

You can pop into the club shop to buy CTFC merchandise too. The new limited edition Hollie Gazzard kit will be on sale to supporters inside the shop.

Match programme

Saturday's edition of the match programme is packed full of some great reads to enjoy ahead of kick-off.

The main interview is with Max Sheaf. The young midfielder gives an insight into his role in the team, developing in League Two football from his loan at Hull City, and growing up in a competitive and successful sporting family.

Alfie May also reflects on the draw at Bradford, under-18s midfielder Tom Chamberlain discusses his time as a Cheltenham player and his hopes for the future, George Lloyd picks his dream 5-a-side team and Charlie Raglan answers the quick-fire questions.

There's also more from around the club including the thoughts of Michael Duff, a feature with club chaplain Malc Allen and the latest from the Community department and Ladies set-up.

The programme is on sale for £3 from around the stadium and in the club shop.

Coverage

Keep up to date with events at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium by following @CTFCofficial on Twitter. Goal updates will also be available on the club's Facebook page. Follow the CTFC Instagram for behind the scenes footage.

Listen to full match commentary online via iFollow. Purchase an audio match pass to hear full match coverage.

After the game you can check out the club website to see reaction from the manager and a player.

Highlights will be available online post-match too on iFollow and at the club's YouTube channel.

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Match Reports

Report & highlights: Robins 2-1 Morecambe

1 February 2020

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Cheltenham Town secured a 2-1 win at home to Morecambe as they continued their strong home form on Saturday.

Goals courtesy of a Connor Thomas header and Alfie May’s fourth goal in five Robins appearances wrapped up the points for Michael Duff’s side.

Morecambe almost stunned Cheltenham with a late fightback after Cole Stockton’s goal and several good chances late on.

Cheltenham made a slow and it was Morecambe who had the game’s first chance, Stockton raced through on goal before blazing a shot over after Jake Doyle-Hayes’ mis control.

Former Robin Jordan Cranston, who scored on his return to the Jonny-Rocks last season, tried his luck from range midway through the first half but it flashed wide as Cheltenham struggled to get a foothold.

The visitors were confident taking aim from range and Adam Phillips saw an effort drop just wide of the left-hand post.

Cranston made a clumsy challenge to give away a penalty for a foul on Luke Varney inside the area on the half-hour mark.

After a lengthy delay while Luke Varney received treatment, Thomas stepped up to once again dispatch the penalty in cool fashion.

Cheltenham doubled their lead moments later and once again it was May, netting his fourth for the club since arriving from Doncaster in January.

Varney picked up the loose ball in midfield, drove forward and slid the ball onto May who out-paced the defence before burying the ball in the bottom left corner.

After an intricate build-up from the Robins, a Sean Long cross found the head of Varney in the box, but his header skimmed just wide.

Max Sheaf had a shot from the edge of the area in first-half stoppage time after a driving run from May, his effort was easily held by Christoffer Mafoumbi, however.

Stockton was denied by a good stop from Owen Evans as the clock ticked down before half-time.

Substitute Tom Nichols was making his debut for the home team and was inches from connecting with May’s unselfish cut-back after the latter raced through on goal.

May came close to doubling his lead in fantastic style, Ryan Broom fed the pass through and May’s strike slammed the outside of the right-hand post.

Morecambe got one back in the 84th minute through substitute A-Jay Leitch-Smith who rounded Evans before slotting home.

Stockton looked certain to equalise moments later after picking it up after Evans dropped it, but was denied by a heroic sliding leg from Ben Tozer.

From the resulting corner, the Robins failed to clear and were saved by the crossbar after Aaron Wildig went for the acrobatic scissor-kick.

CHELTENHAM XI: (3-5-2) Evans, Raglan, Tozer (c), Greaves; Long, Thomas (Broom, 50’), Doyle-Hayes, Hussey, Sheaf (Ince, 66’); May, Varney (Nichols, 66’).

Subs not used: Lapworth, Boyle, Debayo, Addai.

MORECAMBE XI: (4-3-3) Mafoumbi, Mbulu, Old, Lavelle (c), Cranston, Wildig, Diagouraga, Phillips (Leitch-Smith, 64’); Mendes Gomes (Bradbury, 83’), Stockton, Slew (Kenyon, 55’).

Subs not used: Halstead, Conlon, Brewitt.

REFEREE: David Rock

ATTENDANCE: 3,044 (86 away)

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