Sky Bet League 2 briefing

  • Last Updated: December 27 2013, 21:16 GMT

Team news, statistics and our verdict for Sunday's action in Sky Bet League 2.

Cheltenham Town looking for more joy against Mansfield
Cheltenham Town looking for more joy against Mansfield

Sunday, December 29

AFC Wimbledon (16) v Plymouth (17)

AFC Wimbledon are set to be without winger George Francomb, unless the club successfully appeal against his Boxing Day dismissal.

Alan Bennett (ankle) needs a fitness test, midfielder Harry Pell (knee) remains sidelined but George Porter is back.

Plymouth manager John Sheridan has Durrell Berry available after suspension.

Fellow full-back Jamie Reckord (ankle) is unlikely to add to his 16 appearances for the Pilgrims as his loan stay is due to end on January 1.

Last season: AFC Wimbledon 1 Plymouth 1, Plymouth 1 AFC Wimbledon 2

Last five league matches: AFC Wimbledon D D L D L; Plymouth D L L W W

Top scorers: Michael Smith (AFC Wimbledon) 9; Reuben Reid (Plymouth) 11

Referee: Andy Woolmer (Northamptonshire)

Our verdict: AFC Wimbledon 0 Plymouth 0

Accrington (18) v Southend (6)

Danny Webber (illness) will be hoping for a return to Accrington's starting XI after he managed a substitute appearance on Boxing Day.

Rob Atkinson (hamstring) was also named on the bench and could be in line for a full return.

Southend will assess Luke Prosser after he missed the 1-0 victory at AFC Wimbledon with a head injury.

Goalscorer Cauley Woodrow is one of several players pushing to start should boss Phil Brown make changes.

Last season: Accrington Stanley 1 Southend 1, Southend 0 Accrington Stanley 1

Last five league matches: Accrington Stanley W L L W D; Southend W D L D W

Top scorers: Kal Naismith (Accrington Stanley) 6; Kevan Hurst (Southend) 8

Referee: Andy Haines (Tyne & Wear)

Our verdict: Accrington 1 Southend 1

Burton Albion (4) v Newport (5)

Burton boss Gary Rowett must decide whether to make changes to his starting line-up for a second game in quick succession.

Lee Bell, Alex MacDonald, Rene Howe, Zander Diamond, Dominic Knowles and Michael Symes all provide options.

Newport defender Ryan Jackson misses out through suspension having accumulated five yellow cards.

Max Porter is closing in on his comeback from a groin injury, while manager Justin Edinburgh is also set to welcome back Andrew Hughes (hamstring).

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Burton Albion W W D D W; Newport County D D W W W

Top scorers: Billy Kee & Adam McGurk (Burton Albion) 8; Chris Zebroski & Conor Washington (Newport County) 7

Referee: Geoff Eltringham (Tyne & Wear)

Our verdict: Burton Albion 1 Newport 2

Bury (23) v York City (20)

Bury boss David Flitcroft will run the rule over at least three players.

Craig Jones (groin), Tom Soares and Shaun Beeley (both hamstring) will all be assessed.

York striker Ryan Bowman could make his first start in over a month as Nigel Worthington's side chase their first league win in nine matches.

Bowman, who returned to the bench for the Boxing Day draw at Accrington following a four-game ban, could be one of several changes.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Bury W D D L D; York D D D D D

Top scorers: Daniel Nardiello (Bury) 9; Wes Fletcher & Ryan Jarvis (York) 8

Referee: Scott Mathieson (Cheshire)

Our verdict: Bury 2 York City 1

Cheltenham (10) v Mansfield (21)

Cheltenham will be without Steve Elliott after the centre-back missed the last two games with an ankle injury.

Kemar Roofe returned to action as a substitute in Cheltenham's 1-0 Boxing Day victory over Exeter and could start.

John Dempster returns for Mansfield after missing the defeat at Rochdale through suspension.

Jamie McGuire and Lee Stevenson are among those vying for recalls after being dropped at Spotland but Sam Clucas and Ben Hutchinson are definitely out.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Cheltenham D W D W W; Mansfield L L D L L

Top scorers: Byron Harrison (Cheltenham) 8; Sam Clucas (Mansfield) 11

Referee: Stephen Martin (Staffordshire)

Our verdict: Cheltenham 2 Mansfield 1

Chesterfield (1) v Dagenham & Redbridge (11)

Chesterfield should have an unchanged squad despite Jimmy Ryan, Sam Morsy (knee) and Gary Roberts (hamstring) all closing in on returns.

Defenders Liam Cooper and Nathan Smith are both available following respective ankle problems.

Dagenham's Lawson D'Ath, Afolabi Obafemi and Josh Scott are among those in contention for recalls as boss Wayne Burnett ponders shuffling his pack.

The Daggers have no fresh injury concerns, although Billy Bingham (knee) and Matt Saunders (ankle) remain doubtful.

Last season: Dag & Red 0 Chesterfield 1, Chesterfield 1 Dag & Red 2

Last five league matches: Chesterfield D L W W D; Dag & Red D W L L L

Top scorers: Marc Richards & Ollie Banks (Chesterfield) 6; Rhys Murphy (Dag & Red) 11

Referee: Richard Clark (Northumberland)

Our verdict: Chesterfield 1 Dagenham & Redbridge 0

Morecambe (9) v Hartlepool (14)

Morecambe boss Jim Bentley is expected to name an unchanged side.

Ryan Williams was an unused substitute on Boxing Day and, having made 16 starts this season, could be called upon should Bentley make changes.

Hartlepool will be without suspended midfielder Andy Monkhouse after he was dismissed against Chesterfield.

Defenders Jordan Richards (double hernia) and Dan Jones (ankle) remain sidelined as Colin Cooper's side bid for their first league win in six attempts.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Morecambe W L W L W; Hartlepool L D D D D

Top scorers: Padraig Amond (Morecambe) 7; Luke James (Hartlepool) 10

Referee: Michael Naylor (Sheffield)

Our verdict: Morecambe 3 Hartlepool 1

Oxford (2) v Scunthorpe (3)

Oxford will be without the suspended Dave Kitson after he picked up his 10th booking of the campaign.

Injured trio Alfie Potter, Jon Meades and Andy Whing all remain sidelined until February.

Scunthorpe will be without striker Sam Winnall after he was shown a second yellow card for celebrating at Bury on Boxing Day.

Michael Collins (calf) and Matt Sparrow (hamstring) are hoping to be involved following injury but Andy Dawson (hip) remains sidelined.

Last season: No Corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Oxford Utd D D W D L; Scunthorpe W W D W D

Top scorers: James Constable (Oxford Utd) 9; Connor Jennings (Scunthorpe) 17

Referee: Andrew Madley (West Yorkshire)

Our verdict: Oxford 2 Scunthorpe 2

Portsmouth (17) v Northampton Town (24)

Bondz N'Gala is available for Portsmouth after he missed out on Boxing Day through suspension.

Simon Ferry and Marcos Painter face checks on knocks, while Shaun Cooper (hamstring), Andy Barcham (thigh) and Tom Craddock (knee) remain out.

Izale McLeod is doubtful for Northampton after hobbling out of the defeat at Burton, while Darren Carter is suspended.

The Cobblers have a lengthy injury list, which includes Clive Platt, Kelvin Langmead and Alex Nicholls.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Portsmouth D D L L W; Northampton D W D L L

Top scorers: Patrick Agyemang & David Connolly (Portsmouth) 5; Luke Norris (Northampton) 6

Referee: Gavin Ward (Surrey)

Our verdict: Portsmouth 1 Northampton Town 1

Rochdale (7) v Bristol Rovers (19)

Rochdale goalkeeper Josh Lillis (illness) is set to return, although young deputy Robbie Thomson may retain his place regardless.

Striker George Donnelly (ankle) remains a long-term absentee so Graham Cummins is hoping to continue up front alongside Scott Hogan.

Bristol Rovers centre-back Mark McChrystal will be available despite nursing a head injury.

Ellis Harrison and Chris Beardsley are among the players in contention should Pirates manager John Ward decide to go for fresh legs.

Last season: Bristol Rovers 2 Rochdale 1, Rochdale 2 Bristol Rovers 1

Last five league matches: Rochdale L D L D W; Bristol Rovers D W L W D

Top scorers: Scott Hogan (Rochdale) 10; John-Joe O'Toole (Bristol Rovers) 7

Referee: Darren Drysdale (Lincolnshire)

Our verdict: Rochdale 3 Bristol Rovers 1

Torquay United (22) v Exeter City (12)

Jayden Stockley is in line for his first Torquay start after returning from a calf injury as a substitute on Boxing Day.

Alan Knill could decide to freshen his side up having selected the same line-up for the last three games.

Exeter boss Paul Tisdale may choose to shuffle his pack, with Sam Parkin, Arron Davies and Craig Woodman among his options.

Tisdale is still without captain Danny Coles (knee) and midfielder Matt Oakley (ankle).

Last season: Exeter 0 Torquay 1, Torquay 1 Exeter 1

Last five league matches: Torquay D L W W D; Exeter D D W L L

Top scorers: Jordan Chapell (Torquay) 5; Alan Gow (Exeter) 6

Referee: Stuart Attwell (Warwickshire)

Our verdict: Torquay 0 Exeter City 1

Wycombe (15) v Fleetwood Town (8)

Wycombe manager Gareth Ainsworth is set to be without top scorer Dean Morgan (hamstring).

Ainsworth threatened to ring the changes following the loss to Newport, which could see Billy Knott and Matt McClure handed recalls.

Fleetwood boss Graham Alexander has an almost fully-fit squad to choose from as he aims to halt a run of three straight defeats.

Jon Parkin and Daniel Carr are in line to benefit should Alexander shuffle his pack.

Last season: Wycombe 1 Fleetwood Town 0, Fleetwood Town 0 Wycombe 1

Last five league matches: Wycombe L D D W L; Fleetwood Town L D W L L

Top scorers: Dean Morgan & Matt McClure (Wycombe) 6; Antoni Sarcevic (Fleetwood Town) 8

Referee: Andy Davies (Hampshire)

Our verdict: Wycombe 2 Fleetwood Town 1


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