The Blues’ Sky Bet League Two season continues this weekend with a trip to Lancashire to take on Accrington Stanley.
After a 1-1 draw with promotion hopefuls Mansfield Town last time out, Keith Curle will be hoping his side can build on that once again.
Both teams enjoyed successful 2016/17 campaigns, with Stanley narrowly missing out on a play-off place to the Cumbrians, and will be hoping to go one better this time around.
Indeed, Accrington have been real contenders in the league over the last two years with a string of impressive displays, and we cast our eye over the recent goings-on with John Coleman’s side.
What's the odds on that?
Sky Bet tip: Exactly two goals to be scored at 5/2.
Exactly two goals have been scored in both of Carlisle’s last two outings.
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Stanley Flying High
Accrington finished last season strongly, losing only twice in their final fourteen games as they rocketed up the table, so it’s been no surprise that they have picked up where they left off.
Coleman’s side currently sit third in Sky Bet League Two having racked up three wins from their opening five games.
The Lancashire outfit have also picked up an impressive Carabao Cup win against Preston North End, so will be high on confidence heading in to this meeting.
A win, coupled with other results, could see Stanley sit top come the end of play on Saturday and they will undoubtedly be keen to seize that opportunity.
One player United will have to watch carefully is striker Kayden Jackson, whose fine form at the start of the season earned him a nomination for Sky Bet League Two Player of the Month.
The 23-year-old joined from Barnsley in the summer and immediately impressed - netting four goals in his first four appearances at the Wham Stadium.
A goal nine minutes into his debut against Colchester was added to with a brace at Yeovil, before he struck again against Mansfield.
Jackson will now be hoping to continue his goal scoring streak.
What Does History Tell Us?
United have fared rather well in their meetings with Accrington over the years, triumphing on 31 occasions compared to Stanley’s 19 victories.
Recent form, however, has been mixed with the last five meetings between the two sides yielding three draws and one draw each.
The games tend to be entertaining affairs, too. Of the last seven meetings, only two of them haven’t seen both teams score. You need to go back to 1936 for the last time this fixture produced a goal-less draw.
Away Day Hoodoo
While United’s record against Accrington is impressive, their form at the Wham Stadium doesn’t make for particularly pleasant reading.
The last time the Blues won a league game at Accrington came way back in 2004/05 courtesy of a 2-1 win in the Conference - Andy Preece netting a second half brace to seal victory.
Since then, the Blues have failed to register a league win at Accrington, although they did pick up a 3-1 win at the Wham Stadium in the 2014/15 Football League Trophy.
Ones to Watch
+ Billy Kee - A Northern Irish international, the prolific Kee rejoined Stanley for a second spell in 2015 and immediately set about finding the back of the net. Over the last two seasons, the striker has found the net on 32 occasions and has proven himself as one of the best marksmen in Sky Bet League Two. He’ll need to be watched carefully on Saturday as he will undoubtedly pose a real attacking threat.
+ Janoi Donacien - Having spent time at Tottenham and Aston Villa as a youngster, Donacien came to Stanley with a great pedigree in the game and quickly impressed with some determined performances at the heart of the defence. Initially penning a short-term deal at the start of last sea-son, his impressive displays earned him a longer-term deal and he has justified that and now forms a key part of a resolute and difficult to break down backline.