Play-off chasing Accrington Stanley host relegation-threatened Northampton Town in League One on Saturday afternoon. Kick-off is at 15:00.
John Colemans' Accrington side sit seventh in League One with 40 points from 22 games, only outside the play-offs on goal difference. Stanley come into the game in fine form, unbeaten in their last three with their most recent win coming in midweek when the thrashed Bristol Rovers by six goals to one.
It's a different story unfortunately for Keith Curles' Cobblers. Northampton sit 21st in the table and are winless in three. Their last outing was a 2-0 loss at the hands of Blackpool.
Stanley boss John Coleman will be without a number of players on Saturday including Ross Sykes, Mo Sangare and Kaba Lamine Sherif, who are out with long term injuries, while Gary Roberts and Ryan Cassidy are short term absentees.
Defender Micheal Nottingham and midfielder Matt Butcher are doubts ahead of the fixture, with the pair being substituted off in Accrington's win in midweek.
Keith Curle has no fresh injury concerns ahead of Saturday but will have some players missing. Scott Pollock, Mark Marshall and Steve Arnold are all still sidelined. Centre back Alan Sheehan is also a doubt for the game.
Baxter, Barclay, Hughes, Burgess, Pritchard, Russell, Conneeley, McConvillem, Uwakwe, Charles, Bishop.
Mitchell, Kioso, Horsfall, Bolger, Jones, Mills, McWilliams, Watson, Morris, Rose, Edmondson.
Ones to watch
When it comes to danger men for the hosts, look no further than inform sticker Dion Charles. Charles has been in impressive form recently with five goals in his last three games, including a hat-trick against Bristol Rovers in midweek.
Charles is Stanley's top scorer this season with 11 league goals in 19 appearances, averaging a goal every 153 minutes - a goal at least once every two games. The Northampton backline will be familiar with the sticker who set up the only goal which separated the sides back in November.
Northampton travel to the north-west on Saturday as the lowest scorers in the division. They have only scored 20 goals so far this season. Forward Sam Hoskins has contributed to seven of those.
With four goals and three assists this season, Hoskins is the Cobblers, joint top scorer this season, alongside Danny Rose who also has four. Saturday's visitors have only scored twice in their last five outings with Sam Hoskins and Rose the only scorers in their recent goal drought.
While the table and recent form between the two sides is heavily in Accringtons favour, Northampton have the upper hand when it comes to the history between the two sides. In the 15 times the sides have faced each other, Northampton have eight wins with three draws and four Accrington wins.
That's where the good news ends for Northampton fans, as the most recent encounter in November 2020 was won by Stanley who came out on top by a single goal.
Where to watch
Both sets of fans will be able to watch the game on iFollow live for £10.
Details for Accrington fans are here.
Northampton fans can purchase their match pass here.
Accrington boss John Coleman is aware that a lot has changed at Northampton since his side beat them in November. He told the Accrington website:
“There has been a lot of changes in their personnel since we last played them,” said Coleman, whose side have only lost two league games at the Wham Stadium this season.
“We beat Gillingham and then we saw a different Gillingham side here so it will be tough.
“We have to keep preparing for the next team, it’s a progression thing. One team will play differently than the other.
“Keith has a lot of experience in this league, and in higher and lower leagues, he knows what he is doing.
“He will be aware of the way we are playing and will be coming up with a plan to try and stop us and exploit what he deems to be our weaknesses. It’s a game of cat and mouse and you need a bit of luck along the way.
“It’s a balancing act between not getting carried away and keeping the players high and confident. We need to keep them wanting more and if you enjoy doing something, you want to do it more.”
Northampton boss Keith Curle wants to see a more attacking performance from his side on Saturday. He told the Northampton website:
“We need to get on the front foot more,” he said.
“We need to be better in the final third and that’s not just the strikers, it’s everybody getting forward. We need to retain the ball better and give those forward players better ammunition.
“We need to ask Accrington questions in their own half so we need to get numbers forward and in the right areas.
“Accrington are a very well organised team and everybody in the team knows their roles and responsibilities.
“They can mix the game up and they are very streetwise. That is meant as a term of respect, they have got a good understanding of what they are about."