Make it Morecambe

  • Last Updated: August 29 2014, 15:32 BST

Sky Bet League 2 leaders Morecambe are again backed for victory in our weekend preview package.

Morecambe are again backed for victory in Sky Bet League 2
Morecambe are again backed for victory in Sky Bet League 2

Read on for Nick Hext's best bets for the weekend's action in Sky Bet League 2. Match-by-match score verdicts and team news will appear in this story in Friday afternoon.

Back Morecambe to beat Tranmere

I backed Morecambe to win their fourth Sky Bet League 2 game in a row last weekend and I'm going to support them to make it five out of five this Saturday. The Shrimps sit top of the table on 12 points but there's still an enticing price to be had when they travel to Tranmere. I don't expect Morecambe to win every game this season - what a story it would be if they do! - but stick with Jim Bentley's men while they are on form.

Back York to draw with Wycombe

York also have a record of four in a row. It's not quite as impressive as Morecambe though as the Minstermen have four draws from their opening four games. Nigel Worthington's men were draw specialists last season - only Scunthorpe and Bury had more matches finish level in Sky Bet League 2 - so this isn't a trend to be surprised by. Wycombe provide the opposition at Bootham Crescent on Saturday and the Chairboys will be looking for a third away win on the spin. I think they will come up just short so another York draw is the way to go.


AFC Wimbledon (9) v Stevenage (18)

Jack Smith (knee) is not yet ready to make a return for AFC Wimbledon despite returning to light training, so Callum Kennedy will continue to deputise at left-back. Andy Frampton remains on the sidelines with a broken ankle.

Stevenage go into the trip with a depleted squad after suffering bad fortune with a number of summer signings. Harry Worley (knee) is expected to be sidelined for the rest of the season, while Calvin Zola, Chris Beardsley and Dean Parrett are yet to feature.

Last season: No Corresponding fixture

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

Top scorers: Matt Tubbs (AFC Wimbledon) 4; Connor Calcutt, Darius Charles & Chris Whelpdale (Stevenage) 1

Match odds: H 6-5 A 23-10 D 2-1

Referee: Darren Handley (Lancashire)

Verdict: AFC Wimbledon 1 Stevenage 1

Bury (7) v Accrington Stanley (23)

Bury striker Daniel Nardiello (groin) will almost certainly miss out. Clive Platt (calf strain) is close to a return while goalkeeper Shwan Jalal (groin) is now fully-fit but appears to have lost his place to Rob Lainton.

Luke Simpson (suspension) is back and Accrington boss James Beattie will have to choose between him, Jay Lynch and Joe Lumley, who joined on loan from QPR. Defender Michael Liddle remains a doubt having not played since picking up a knock on the opening day of the season. 

Last season: Accrington Stanley 0 Bury 0, Bury 3 Accrington Stanley 0

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

Top scorers: Danny Rose (Bury) 3; James Gray (Accrington Stanley) 2 Match odds: H 13-20 A 4-1 D 5-2

Referee: Kevin Wright (Cambridgeshire)

Verdict: Bury 3 Accrington 0

Cambridge Utd (17) v Carlisle (20)

Defenders Michael Nelson and Matteo Lanzoni have joined Cambridge this week, ahead of the clash at the R Costings Abbey Stadium. Several players picked up bumps and bruises in last weekend's loss to Morecambe but unused Jayden Stockley could feature.

Carlisle's injury problems continue with Courtney Meppen-Walter (knee surgery), Troy Archibald-Henville (shin) and Matty Robson (knee) all out. Danny Kearns (illness) is expected to be back in contention and striker Mark Beck is close to returning from an ear problem. 

Last season: No Corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Cambridge Utd L W L D L; Carlisle L L L D D

Top scorers: Tom Elliott & Kwesi Appiah (Cambridge Utd) 2; Antony Sweeney & Brad Potts (Carlisle) 1

Match odds: H 23-20 A 11-5 D 11-5

Referee: Carl Berry (Surrey)

Verdict: Cambridge 0 Carlisle 1

Cheltenham (3) v Hartlepool (19)

Cheltenham could hand forward John Marquis a debut after he signed on an initial one-month loan from Millwall. Birmingham loanee Koby Arthur is close to earning a start, while boss Mark Yates confirmed Asa Hall (calf) remains on the sidelines.

Wantaway forward Luke James could be available, after rejoining the squad, following two transfer requests and bids from Peterborough. Stuart Parnaby (hamstring) remains doubtful and midfielder Lewis Hawkins (ankle) is unlikely to feature. 

Last season: Hartlepool 0 Cheltenham 1, Cheltenham 2 Hartlepool 2

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

Top scorers: Koby Arthur (Cheltenham) 2; Marlon Harewood, Neil Austin, Charlie Wyke & Jonathan Franks (Hartlepool) 1

Match odds: H 1-1 A 13-5 D 11-5

Referee: Christopher Sarginson (Staffordshire)

Verdict: Cheltenham 2 Hartlepool 1

Mansfield (11) v Burton Albion (4)

Sam Clucas is likely to return to Mansfield's starting line-up after he was kept out amid ongoing discussions over a move to Chesterfield. Cox is likely to make changes after defeat at Dagenham and Martin Riley, Fergus Bell, Adam Murray and Ollie Palmer are options.

Lucas Akins (broken hand) and Stuart Beavon (rested) are expected to return for Burton after missing the League Cup win over QPR. On-loan striker Jacob Blyth made his debut as a second-half sub against Rangers and could make his first league appearance. 

Last season: Mansfield 0 Burton Albion 0, Burton Albion 1 Mansfield 0

Last five league matches: Mansfield W L W W L; Burton Albion L W W W D

Top scorers: Adam Murray, Alex Fisher, Ryan Tafazolli & Chris Clements (Mansfield) 1: Stuart Beavon (Burton Albion) 2

Match odds: H 21-10 A 5-4 D 21-10

Referee: Darren Drysdale (Lincolnshire)

Verdict: Mansfield 1 Burton 2

Northampton (13) v Exeter (21)

Darren Carter (hamstring) is in line to return for Northampton after being sidelined for two weeks. Alex Nicholls will again be on the bench after making his comeback in the Capital One Cup against Bournemouth following 22 months out with a broken leg.

Exeter remain without Jordan Moore-Taylor, Christian Ribeiro and Jamie Reid, who are yet to feature this season. Striker Tom Nichols looks set to be sidelined once more.

Last season: Exeter 0 Northampton 1, Northampton 1 Exeter 2

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

Top scorers: Lawson D'Ath (Northampton) 2; David Wheeler & Tom Nichols (Exeter) 1

Match odds: H 4-6 A 7-2 D 13-5

Referee: Michael Bull (Essex)

Verdict: Northampton 2 Exeter 0

Oxford Utd (24) v Dag & Red (10)

Oxford will be without Junior Brown (suspension). Boss Michael Appleton can welcome back loanee George Long (ineligible for League Cup) as they search for their first three points of the new campaign.

New striker Christian Doidge is still waiting for his debut after picking up an ankle injury while warming up for the recent win at Hartlepool. Damian Batt (abductor) has missed the last three matches and Billy Bingham (shins), Rhys Murphy (hip) and Zavon Hines (knee) are long-term absentees. 

Last season: Dag & Red 1 Oxford Utd 0, Oxford Utd 2 Dag & Red 1

Last five league matches: Oxford Utd L L L L L; Dag & Red W L L W W

Top scorers: Danny Hylton (Oxford Utd) 3; Ashley Hemmings, Abu Ogogo, Jamie Cureton & Luke Howell (Dag & Red) 2

Match odds: H 11-10 A 12-5 D 21-10

Referee: Gary Sutton (Lincolnshire)

Verdict: Oxford 0 Dagenham 0

Plymouth (14) v Southend (8)

Plymouth boss John Sheridan confirmed he will use a different shape in home and away games from now on, starting with the visit of Phil Brown's men. Lee Cox and Tyler Harvey are pushing for starts having been relegated to the bench for last Saturday's 2-1 defeat at Bury.

Southend boss Phil Brown is ready to shuffle his pack slightly, after sticking with a settled side for their four League Two games. Jack Payne, David Worrall and Gary Deegan are thought to be knocking on the door.

Last season: Plymouth 1 Southend 1, Southend 1 Plymouth 0

Last five league matches: Plymouth D L W D L; Southend W W W L D

Top scorers: Reuben Reid (Plymouth) 4; Lee Barnard, Ryan Leonard, Ben Coker, Conor Clifford & Myles Weston (Southend) 1

Match odds: H 19-10 A 6-4 D 11-5

Referee: Brendan Malone (Wiltshire)

Verdict: Plymouth 1 Southend 1

Portsmouth (2) v Newport County (22)

Andy Awford is set to recall the likes of Ben Chorley, Nicky Shorey, Danny Hollands, James Dunne and Craig Westcarr. Alex Wynter (head), Patrick Agyemang (hamstring), Danny East (groin), Michael Pope (Achilles), Jack Whatmaugh (ankle), Tom Craddock and Wes Fogden (both knee) are all still sidelined.

Newport will be without striker Rene Howe after he underwent surgery on his thigh. Justin Edinburgh could also be without forwards Chris Zebroski (groin) and Aaron O'Connor (dead leg).

Last season: Newport County 1 Portsmouth 2, Portsmouth 0 Newport County 2

Last five league matches: Portsmouth D D W W W; Newport County W L L L D

Top scorers: Jed Wallace & Craig Westcarr (Portsmouth) 2; Shaun Jeffers, Adam Chapman, Chris Zebroski & Aaron O'Connor (Newport County) 1

Match odds: H 5-6 A 3-1 D 12-5

Referee: Lee Collins (Surrey)

Verdict: Portsmouth 3 Newport 1

Shrewsbury (6) v Luton (12)

Anthony Griffith could make his Shrewsbury debut after becoming Micky Mellon's 17th signing of the summer. Andy Mangan (hamstring) is missing and Liam Lawrence is still suspended after being sent off at Northampton.

Scott Griffiths is expected to return for Luton following injury in what was the first league fixture he had missed since the back end of the 2012/13 campaign. Jonathan Smith and Alex Lawless remain on the sidelines and could be back for first-team selection in around 10 days' time. 

Last season: No Corresponding fixture

Last five league matches: Shrewsbury D D W W D; Luton W W L D D

Top scorers: Andy Mangan (Shrewsbury) 4; Luke Rooney (Luton) 2

Match odds: H 5-4 A 11-5 D 2-1

Referee: Peter Bankes (Merseyside)

Verdict: Shrewsbury 2 Luton 2

Tranmere (15) v Morecambe (1)

Tranmere are hopeful Matt Gill (illness) will be available despite missing Thursday's training session. That would give Edwards a fully-fit squad - barring full-back Liam Ridehalgh (ankle), who is still yet to feature this term.

Sky Bet League Two leaders Morecambe will be without Laurence Wilson but have signed Joe Widdowson on loan from Bury. Ryan Edwards (fractured fingers) was back in training on Thursday but the match may come too soon for Andy Parrish (ankle).

Last season: No Corresponding fixture

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

Top scorers: Cole Stockton, Eliot Richards, James Rowe, Abdulai Bell-Baggie, Max Power & Marc Laird (Tranmere) 1; Kevin Ellison (Morecambe) 4

Match odds: H 5-4 A 23-10 D 11-5

Referee: Mark Haywood (W Yorkshire)

Verdict: Tranmere 0 Morecambe 1

York (16) v Wycombe (5)

York's John McCombe is pushing for a recall and winger Lindon Meikle is hoping to start after illness restricted him to bench duty. Ryan Jarvis (ankle) and Josh Carson (knee) remain sidelined, while 16-year-old Ben Hirst is likely to retain his place in the squad.

In-form Wycombe have no fresh injury worries as they look to continue their impressive start to the season. Stuart Lewis (pre-season injury) made his return last weekend and Josh Scowen could make a comeback but Gary Doherty misses out once again.

Last season: York 2 Wycombe 0, Wycombe 1 York 1

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

Top scorers: Jake Hyde & Keith Lowe (York) 2; Peter Murphy (Wycombe) 3

Match odds: H 13-10 A 2-1 D 21-10

Referee: Chris Kavanagh (Lancashire)

Verdict: York 1 Wycombe 1