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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW: Cheltenham Town vs. Oldham Athletic

3 January 2020

Latics travel to Cheltenham looking to put back-to-back defeats behind them on Saturday (3pm KO).

Form Guide

Oldham’s decent run of form has ended recently with back-to-back defeats in the space of four days whilst Cheltenham are winless in five.

The Robins’ last six:

  1. Mansfield Town 0-1 Cheltenham Town
  2. Cheltenham Town 1-1 Cambridge United
  3. Port Vale 1-1 Cheltenham Town
  4. Cheltenham Town 0-1 Plymouth Argyle
  5. Northampton Town 1-1 Cheltenham Town
  6. Newport County 1-1 Cheltenham Town

Head-to-Head

Latics have won four of their 15 games against Cheltenham Town. Seven of them have ended in draws including the last time the clubs played each other in October.

Filipe Morais’ early goal was not enough to secure all three points at Boundary Park as Ryan Broom levelled with 20 minutes left.

Athletic are undefeated in the last four games between the two clubs though and you have to go back to 2007 to find the last time that Cheltenham beat Oldham in a league match. The last time Oldham beat the Robins was October 2018.

Oldham Athletic 2-0 Cheltenham Town – 23rd October 2018

Latics were helped to a 2-0 win by Sam Jones receiving a straight red card on half-time for a confrontation with Jose Baxter.

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Jonathan Benteke, brother of Christian, scored his first goal in English football to give Latics the lead with just quarter of an hour left at Boundary Park and Callum Lang made sure of all three points with his goal in stoppage time.

Oldham had gone five without a win but victory at Boundary Park saw the team rise to 12th in the Sky Bet League Two table.

League Story So Far

Town enjoyed a good start to the season by beating Scunthorpe United 4-1. They went through the months of September and October unbeaten, winning six of their eight games in this period. Their 1-0 defeat away at Crawley Town was their only loss of the first 13 league games of the season.

However, they have been unable to replicate this level of consistency throughout the season. They have won just one of their last ten league games. That may sound like a horrific run of bad form but they haven’t been losing a lot of games in this run either; seven of these 10 games have resulted in a draw.

Cheltenham are currently 8th in the League Two table, just one place and one point off the play-off spots with a game in hand. Going into Saturday’s game, they are 12 points ahead of Oldham.

What We Said

Dino Maamria after his sides defeat against Scunthorpe: "We're not a team that thrives off the basics, it's something that we're working really hard on.

"Like I said, we've been on a good run but we've not been playing fantastic football. The football has been ok, it's been improving but what has been good about it has been the work rate and basics that I'm talking about has been really good.

"So, when you do that you always pick up points. When you turn up like this, it's a hard afternoon because our fans turn up and don't expect that so I can only apologise.

"We've been good in terms of our resilience. We conceded against Crawley and we won the game 2-1.

"I think the squad has been tested definitely. Three games in quick succession it's really difficult. What we've got to do is we can't feel sorry for ourselves we've now got to go to Cheltenham which is another difficult one at the weekend. So, we've got to make sure that we're ready, stay positive and be honest and have those conversations."

Maamria will have selection issues once again with the likes of Zak Mills, David Wheater and Chris McCann carrying knocks whilst Tomas Egert misses out again due to concussion protocol.

What They Said

Michael Duff after his sides draw at Newport: "It is a good point away from home but it just leaves us slightly frustrated. I thought we maybe could have shaded it and the way we conceded the goal that's the real bug bear.

"We've come to two real tough places away from home in the last couple of days, Northampton and Newport, and stood up to everything they've thrown at us.

"Scott (Flinders) has had hardly anything to do in the two games and we've conceded from two set plays. That's a real frustration and probably a measure of how far we've come."

Watch Out For

Ryan Broom – Cheltenham Town midfielder Ryan Broom has been an all most ever-present feature of their side this season and netted the leveller in the 1-1 draw at Boundary Park in October so Maamria will know the threat that he carries.

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The Welshman has been in good form for the Robins this season, netting six times, already four more than he managed for them in the entirety of the last campaign.

Broom came through the youth system at Bristol Rovers but would only go on to make nine league appearances for the club and was shipped out on loan to Taunton City, Bath City and Eastleigh before his release from Rovers. Town snapped him up on a free in 2018.

Familiar Face

Current Forest Green Rovers player Carl Winchester has played for both clubs.

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Winchester played for Oldham between 2010 and 2017, making 117 league appearances. He joined the club following a successful trial and made his debut in November 2010. He then established his place in the team in the 14/15 season but left for the Robins on a free transfer in January 2017.

Winchester spent a season-and-a-half with Town making 64 league appearances, before joining their Gloucestershire rivals Forest Green Rovers on a two-year deal.

Stadium

Cheltenham Town play at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium. The 7,066 capacity stadium got its unusual name for sponsorship reasons.

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It has been the home of the Robins since 1932 and also played host to Gloucester City between 2010 and 2017.

The record attendance for the stadium came against Reading in an FA Cup game in 1956.

It was the smallest stadium used in League One in the 07/08 and 08/09 seasons.

In The Dugout

Michael Duff is the man in the dugout for the Robins.

Duff made over 300 appearances in his time as a player with Cheltenham Town before moving on to Burnley where he would play in the Premier League. In addition to this, as a player Duff was capped 24 times for the Northern Irish national team.

The 41-year-old has had managerial roles in the academy setup at Burnley but Cheltenham Town is his first professional job as manager. He was appointed boss in September 2018 and following a good start to the 19/20 season, was awarded a contract extension keeping him with the Robins till June 2023.

He has recently bolstered his squad by signing striker Alfie May on a two-and-a-half year contract from Doncaster Rovers for an undisclosed fee and could make his debut against Latics.

Ticket Information

Latics travel to The Jonny-Rocks Stadium on Saturday 4 January 2020. There will be no price increase on the day with 123 tickets sold before the fixture.

Here are the prices:

  • Adults - £22
  • Over 65’s - £16
  • Student - £16
  • Wheelchair Users - £16
  • Under 18’s – £8

Please be aware that on the day sales will be cash only on the turnstiles. While they are able to offer card payments at the ticket office, there is usually a large queue, so bringing cash is highly recommended.

Here is a reminder of the supporters' coach details:

  • Departs: 10am
  • Adults: £21
  • Under 18: £16

How To Follow The Game

Live commentary is available on iFollow Latics with Mike Brown and Roy Butterworth who will be talking you through the match.

The iFollow video match pass is available for overseas residents only.

To subscribe for the fixture, click here.

Alternatively, supporters can also follow the game with live updates on the club's official Twitter account: @OfficialOAFC.


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