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Match Preview | Tranmere Rovers (H)

Fifth-placed Rovers in action at the JobServe Community Stadium this weekend

24 March 2022

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Wayne Brown and his Colchester United side will be hoping to put a dent in the promotion ambitions of Tranmere Rovers at the JCS this weekend.

It's the third game running that the U's have come up against a side named 'Rovers', and the third successive match that Wayne Brown's team will have to go up against a side chasing promotion. 

The U's only been beaten by a single goal in the other fixtures, falling to 1-0 defeats at the hands of Bristol Rovers and Forest Green Rovers, but they will be looking to make amends at home on the weekend. 

Colchester United will be without Tommy Smith, Tyreik Wright and Armando Dobra, who have all been called up to international duty for this weekend's round of fixtures. 

Tom Dallison was back on the bench after suffering from a muscle strain, and the medical staff will be checking on the fitness of Alan Judge, Emyr Huws and Owura Edwards ahead of the upcoming Sky Bet League Two fixture. 

The Opposition
Micky Mellon's Tranmere side come into the game with one of the best defensive records in the division. Conceding just thirty-three goals in their thirty-eight league games this season, Rovers sit fifth in the standings, outside of the top three on goal difference. 

The Prenton Park side have been strong over the course of the season, but are just recovering from a mid-season wobble, a run that saw them pick up just two wins in nine games. 

But Rovers have been able to regain some form over the last trio of games, picking up two wins and a draw and helping them to stay in touch at the top of the pile.

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A strong second-half performance at Sutton United last weekend gave Micky Mellon some food for thought coming into this weekend's fixture. 

"We made a little change in the way we wanted to play, and we started to get forward, started to win knock-downs and we are really disappointed not to have won the game in the end.

"I understand that we're playing against one of our rivals at the top away from home, a point is the minimum that we would have wanted to take, but we're disappointed with the first half performance.

"If we can play like we did in the second period though, we'll be in the shake up at the end of the season."

Rovers have a couple of veteran players at the back, with the 'keeper, Joe Murphy, and centre-half, Peter Clarke, still going strong at forty-years-old. The pair have a combined total of over 1,500 games between them, and they will be key to Rovers' success at the end of the season. 

At the other end of the pitch, Tranmere have struggled a little more than they would have liked. With forty-four goals scored, Mellon's side are the lowest scorers in the top ten. Elliott Nevitt is on six for his side, including his January Goal of the Month strike against Scunthorpe, but the summer signing has a whole host of players hot on his heels. 

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Former Liverpool midfielder Jay Spearing has been sat on the sidelines with an injury for the last seven weeks, although he has been edging closer to fitness, he may be in line to return against the U's this weekend. 

Match Officials
Carl Brook is the man officiating this weekend's game. This season he has issued ninety-eight yellows and eight reds, including dismissing players in both of his last two games. 

His last game in charge involving the U's was earlier this season, when Colchester United hosted Wigan Athletic in the Second Round of the FA Cup, a game with four cautions. 

He will be assisted by Daniel Bonneywell, Michael Chard and Darren Blunden. 

Last Time We Met

The U's fell to a two-goal defeat at Prenton Park earlier this season. Josh Hawkes and Peter Clarke were on target in the second half as Micky Mellon's side took all three points.

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Ticket Info
Tickets are available online from Col U Tickets, click HERE to get yours, currently priced at the ADVANCE rate. 

Tickets will also be available to purchase on the day from the Club Shop. 


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