Derby day is coming! ICheltenham Town make the short trip to Nailsworth to face Forest Green Rovers in Sky Bet League Two on Saturday (kick-off 3pm).
The Robins will be backed by just under 1,000 fans in the fixture as Gary Johnson’s men look to build on a battling 0-0 draw against Cambridge United in midweek.
Forest Green Rovers have been in good form to climb up the league table to 20th spot in recent weeks with just one defeat in six games, that coming in a 3-2 defeat to Chesterfield on Tuesday night.
Forest Green manager Mark Cooper insists the ‘El Glosico’ – as it has been dubbed – is just another game as his team prepares to welcome Cheltenham Town.
“It’s not big, it’s a game, it’s three points. Yes we’re playing Cheltenham, we’re in the Football League, it’s a local derby but it’s just three points and that’s all we’re focusing on,” he said.
"We've only played in the Checkatrade, which we won and played really well.
“It wasn't a big crowd so I haven't really experienced that real competitive edge yet in terms of on the terraces but I'm sure we'll see that on Saturday.
"I don't get into the mind games. It doesn't help us win a game, it doesn't help Cheltenham win a game. If people outside of Forest Green want to build that up then great.”
Cheltenham team news: Striker Brian Graham and midfielder Carl Winchester will be assessed ahead of the derby. Graham missed the midweek clash with Cambridge through illness while Winchester was replaced as a precaution with a tight calf. Midfielder Kevin Dawson is eligible to return after a three-game suspension. Jordan Cranston, Jaanai Gordon and Jordon Forster remain long-term injury casualties.
FGR team news: Forest Green’s appeal against defender Manny Monthe’s sending off a Chesterfield has been rejected so he misses the derby as he starts a three-game ban. Drissa Traore and Isaiah Osbourne both picked up knocks in the week so Mark Cooper may be forced to make changes to his side, having named the same starting XI for the last two games.
The man in the middle:
Poulton-based referee Scott Oldham – who has taken charge of 17 games this season and handed out 38 yellow cards and two red cards - will take charge of the league clash at the New Lawn. Oldham previously refereed Cheltenham’s opening game of the season against Crawley Town and loss to Port Vale in October. He will be assisted by Andrew Newbold, Nigel Smith and fourth official Ronald Ganfield.
Last time we met:
03/10/17 – Cheltenham 1-2 Forest Green Rovers (CTT)
21/11/15 – Cheltenham 1-1 Forest Green Rovers (NC)
22/09/15 – Forest Green Rovers 2-2 Cheltenham (NC)
Cheltenham fans are advised that our away allocation for this fixture has SOLD OUT.
This is an ALL TICKET match and therefore no tickets will be sold to Cheltenham Town fans on matchday in Nailsworth.