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Match Previews

Preview: Oldham Athletic (H)

3 January 2020

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The Jonny-Rocks Stadium plays hosts to its first match of the year and the new decade on Saturday when Oldham Athletic are the opponents (kick-off: 3pm).

Michael Duff's Cheltenham side saw in 2020 with a late point on the road at Newport County AFC on New Year's Day.

And now he will take his troops into battle on home turf for the first time since after the Christmas period as Oldham visit.

Tickets for the game are on sale online and will also be available to buy at the turnstiles on matchday.

Team news

New signing Alfie May is expected to make his debut after completing his transfer from Doncaster Rovers.

Jonte Smith is back in training so could feature after a recent illness. Luke Varney and Reuben Reid are both out though.

Watch what assistant manager Russell Milton had to say before the game:

New signing Alfie May trained with his new colleagues for the first time today. Take a look at his first session from The Energy Check Training Ground:

Opposition

It was a mixed Christmas period for Oldham. They secured back-to-back wins over Crawley Town and then Morecambe on Boxing Day, but saw their final game of 2019 and New Year's Day matches against Salford City and Scunthorpe United end in losses.

Their squad boasts plenty of higher level experience, as well as a range of nationalities, while manager Dino Maamria is himself Tunisian. It'll be the third time he's lined up against the Robins as a manager this season having taken charge of Stevenage earlier in the campaign and once with the Latics a short time after he was appointed.

Goalkeeper Zeus de la Paz played in the first meeting between Saturday's two teams in October. The Curaçao international joined Oldham in 2018 from American outfit Cincinnati Dutch Lions.

In front of him the presence of former Middlesbrough and Bolton Wanderers central defender David Wheater offers plenty of experience while the likes of Alex Iacovitti, Zak Mills, and youth team product Tom Hamer are other likely starters in their backline.

They have already moved to bolster their midfield department now the transfer window has opened. Christian N'Guessan has joined on loan from Burnley, while existing player Gevaro Nepomuceno has returned to their set-up after completing a recent loan period at National League strugglers Chesterfield.

Mohamed Sylla provides plenty of drive in the middle of the pitch, while another experienced former top flight recruit in the shape of ex-Burnley and Wolves midfielder David Jones joins another former Burnley man in the shape of former Manchester United youngster Chris Eagles. Jonny Smith and Filipe Morais are others who add quality and knowhow of League Two to this area of the pitch.

In attack Beninese international Désiré Segbé Azankpo is one to look out for. The much travelled Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro is a recent arrival, while ex-Gloucester and Cinderford Town front man Scott Wilson has an eye for goal having spent last season in the division at Macclesfield.

Oldham are positioned 20th in the league heading into Saturday and have taken 12 points on the road from 11 away matches this season.

Last time out

It was the beginning of October when the two teams last met earlier this season.

Former Robins winger Jonny Smith set up Filipe Morais to drive the Latics in front in the first half at Boundary Park.

Cheltenham earned something from the game though when Conor Thomas collected Chris Hussey's cross on the right-hand side and set-up Ryan Broom to finish confidently inside the box to draw parity.

Watch the highlights back from that away trip earlier this season:

Tickets

Buy online ahead of Saturday with tickets also available on the turnstiles in all areas of the stadium.

The ticket office will be open ahead of kick-off selling tickets for upcoming matches, including the home clash with Walsall on Saturday 11 January.

From midday the club shop will also be open selling merchandise and copies of the match programme.

Match programme

George Lloyd features as the big interview in Saturday's programme. The academy graduate discusses how he's found leading the attack in League Two over Christmas, how he's still young in the professional game while trying to make an impact and how influential training as a gymnast from the age of six has been on him making it professionally.

There's also an interview with Ben Tozer after the captain scored the first goal of 2020 on New Year's Day. Tozer also answers the quickfire questions while Will Boyle picks his dream 5-a-side team from former teammates.

On top of that there's an update from the chairman, the latest from Michael Duff, a look back at the club's history on 4 January, an interview with Ladies boss Alex Cheal looking ahead to 2020, under-18s manager Pete Haynes provides an update from his team plus much more.

The programme is on sale around the stadium and in the club shop at a price of £3.

Coverage

Follow @CTFCofficial on Twitter for updates on the day. You can also check out the club's Facebook page for goal and score news.

Listen to full match commentary via the iFollow service. Purchase an audio match pass to listen online.

After the game check out the club website to read a match report and see reaction from inside the camp to the full time result.

Highlights will be available on iFollow and the club's YouTube channel from midnight.

 


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