Sky Bet League 1 briefing

  • Last Updated: February 21 2014, 16:41 GMT

Team news, statistics and our verdict for Saturday's action in Sky Bet League 1.

Dave Edwards: Fit again for Wolves
Dave Edwards: Fit again for Wolves

Saturday, February 22

Bradford v MK Dons

Matthew Bates (hip) misses out again so Carl McHugh will continue at left-back for Bradford. Matt Taylor and James Meredith both remain out with foot injuries. Winger Raffaele De Vita is not ready to return from a hip problem.

Midfielder Samir Carruthers (knee) and full-back Lee Hodson are concerns for the Dons after suffering knocks against Preston in midweek. Darren Potter and Dean Bowditch remain sidelined with Achilles and groin complaints respectively.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Bradford D L D L W; Milton Keynes Dons L L W W D

Top scorers: James Hanson (Bradford) 9; Ben Reeves (Milton Keynes Dons) 10

Referee: Gary Sutton (Lincolnshire).

Our verdict: Bradford 3 MK Dons 1

Brentford v Wolves

Brentford continue to be without influential winger Sam Saunders (knee) while midfielder Toumani Diagouraga, who last featured for the Bees on New Year's Day, has joined Portsmouth on loan.

Striker Leon Clarke is unlikely to be available for Wolves as he continues his recovery from a heel problem. Dave Edwards is fit again after a foot injury and the midfielder will hope to be included on the bench for the top-of-the-table clash.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Brentford D W W D W; Wolverhampton W W W W W

Top scorers: Clayton Donaldson (Brentford) 14; Leon Clarke (Wolverhampton) 18

Referee: Iain Williamson (Berkshire).

Our verdict: Brentford 1 Wolves 0

Carlisle v Rotherham

Carlisle midfielder James Berrett is out with a hamstring injury while Liam Noble and Sam Byrne are both injury doubts. Chris Chantler is fit again after an ankle problem and pushing for his first start since November.

Rotherham will check on Mark Bradley as the right-back has a back complaint. Claude Davis and Alex Revell both came off against Stevenage last weekend with knocks but should be in the squad for the trip to Cumbria.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Carlisle W L L W W; Rotherham W D W W W

Top scorers: David Amoo (Carlisle) 11; Kieran Agard (Rotherham) 15

Referee: Stephen Martin (Staffordshire).

Our verdict: Carlisle 1 Rotherham 2

Colchester v Preston

Sanchez Watt is suspended but fellow forward Jabo Ibehre is fit again after a bout of illness and could replace him in the Colchester team. However, Freddie Sears, Gavin Massey and Alex Gilbey are also options for U's boss Joe Dunne.

Craig Davies, on loan from Bolton, is the only concern for Preston with a slight hamstring problem. The striker missed the MK Dons game in midweek and will be assessed ahead of kick-off.

Last season: Colchester 1 Preston 0, Preston 0 Colchester 0

Last five league matches: Colchester D W W L D; Preston D W W D D

Top scorers: Jabo Ibehre (Colchester) 6; Joe Garner (Preston) 17

Referee: David Phillips (West Sussex).

Our verdict: Colchester 1 Preston 2

Leyton Orient v Swindon

Chris Dagnall's goal in the 2-0 victory over Stevenage could see him keep his place ahead of fit-again Kevin Lisbie in Orient's starting line-up. Shaun Batt is also fully fit again for the O's after a hamstring problem.

Swindon will be without on-loan striker Nile Ranger (hamstring). Jamie Reckord returns to contention having been ineligible against Peterborough in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy but full-backs Nathan Thompson and Jay McEveley are suspended.

Last season: Leyton Orient 0 Swindon 0, Swindon 0 Leyton Orient 1

Last five league matches: Leyton Orient L L L D W; Swindon W D L W D

Top scorers: David Mooney (Leyton Orient) 17; Michael Smith (Swindon) 13

Referee: Gavin Ward (Surrey).

Our verdict: Leyton Orient 1 Swindon 1

Notts County v Shrewsbury

Notts County will have an unchanged squad as captain Dean Leacock, fellow defender Mustapha Dumbuya (thigh) and on-loan striker Callum Ball (ankle) remain unavailable due to injury. Magpies manager Shaun Derry may even stick with the same starting line-up.

Tom Bradshaw (knee) will miss Michael Jackson's first game as full-time manager of Shrewsbury. Joe Jacobson (back), Luke Summerfield and Aaron Wildig (both thigh) will all be assessed ahead of the clash between the two relegation rivals.

Last season: Shrewsbury 2 Notts County 2, Notts County 3 Shrewsbury 2

Last five league matches: Notts County L L L W L; Shrewsbury L L D L D

Top scorers: Callum McGregor (Notts County) 13; Tom Bradshaw (Shrewsbury) 5

Referee: Seb Stockbridge (Tyne & Wear).

Our verdict: Notts County 3 Shrewsbury 1

Oldham v Gillingham

Oldham will be without suspended defender Genseric Kusunga, who begins a two-match ban, while midfielder Anton Rodgers and captain Korey Smith are out with knee injuries.

Gillingham will be without Ryan Inniss due to a hamstring injury but Elliott Hewitt is expected to return to contention after a bout of illness. Striker Danny Kedwell remains sidelined with hernia trouble.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Oldham W L W D L; Gillingham L W L W L

Top scorers: Danny Philliskirk (Oldham) 11; Cody McDonald (Gillingham) 13

Referee: Mick Russell (Hertfordshire).

Our verdict: Oldham 1 Gillingham 2

Port Vale v Crewe

Port Vale manager Micky Adams has hinted at changes to his starting line-up. After failing to score in the last two matches those changes could come in attack, with Jennison Myrie-Williams, Gavin Tomlin and Jordan Hugill vying for recalls.

On-loan Watford forward Uche Ikpeazu (ankle) remains a doubt for Crewe. Max Clayton and George Ray are struggling with ankle injuries and are definitely out along with Ryan Colclough, who has a stomach complaint.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Port Vale L L W D L; Crewe W L W D L

Top scorers: Tom Pope (Port Vale) 12; Chuks Aneke (Crewe) 11

Referee: Roger East (Wiltshire).

Our verdict: Port Vale 1 Crewe 1

Sheffield United v Bristol City

Sheffield United's latest loan signing Ben Davies is hoping to make his first start for the club, but his former Derby team-mate John Brayford faces a late fitness test on a muscle injury.

Bristol City have no fresh injury worries. Midfielders Liam Kelly and Stephen Pearson continue to build up to full fitness after lengthy lay-offs while Marvin Elliott and Scott Wagstaff both face long spells on the sidelines after suffering serious injuries.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Sheff Utd L D L W W; Bristol City W L D W D

Top scorers: Jose Baxter & Chris Porter (Sheff Utd) 7; Jay Emmanuel-Thomas (Bristol City) 18

Referee: Scott Duncan (Tyne & Wear).

Our verdict: Sheffield United 2 Bristol City 0

Stevenage v Peterborough

Darius Charles is fit again after a leg injury and could go into the Stevenage starting line-up. Michael Doughty and new loanee Curtis Obeng will also hope to force their way into manager Graham Westley's plans.

Midfielder Jack Payne (groin) is Peterborough's only injury doubt. Conor Washington, Jack Baldwin, Ben Nugent and Nicky Ajose are all available again after being cup-tied against Swindon in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy on Monday night.

Last season: No corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Stevenage W L W L L; Peterborough W W L W D

Top scorers: Francois Zoko (Stevenage) 14; Britt Assombalonga (Peterborough) 24

Referee: Oliver Langford (W Midlands).

Our verdict: Stevenage 0 Peterborough 3

Tranmere v Coventry

John McMahon will take charge of Tranmere with boss Ronnie Moore suspended. McMahon could choose to welcome veterans Ian Goodison and Andy Robinson back into the fold.

Coventry will assess on-loan Aston Villa striker Nathan Delfouneso (thigh) and goalkeeper Joe Murphy (illness) but Chuba Akpom misses out after returning to parent club Arsenal. Full-back Blair Adams (illness) and midfielder Mark Marshall (hamstring) are fit again while striker Callum Wilson (dislocated shoulder) is nearing a return.

Last season: Coventry 1 Tranmere 0, Tranmere 2 Coventry 0

Last five league matches: Tranmere W L W L D; Coventry D L W L L

Top scorers: Ryan Lowe (Tranmere) 16; Franck Moussa & Callum Wilson (Coventry) 15

Referee: Andrew Madley (West Yorkshire).

Our verdict: Tranmere 1 Coventry 2

Walsall v Crawley

Walsall are boosted by the return of captain Andy Butler from suspension so James Chambers may lose his place in the team. Fellow defenders Andy Taylor and Dean Holden both remain sidelined by knee injuries.

Crawley, who have not played a game since January 25, could hand debuts to Rory Fallon, Hiram Boateng, Sullay Kaikai and Paul Connolly. Dannie Bulman (fractured cheekbone) and Andy Drury (groin) have regained full fitness since Town last played.

Last season: Walsall 2 Crawley Town 2, Crawley Town 2 Walsall 2

Last five league matches: Walsall D W D L D; Crawley Town W L W D D

Top scorers: Craig Westcarr (Walsall) 13; Joe Walsh & Billy Clarke (Crawley Town) 5

Match Odds:H 19-20 A 14-5 D 11-5

Referee: Kevin Wright (Cambridgeshire).

Our verdict: Walsall 2 Crawley 0

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