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15 September 2018 Venue Brunton Park Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

BIG MATCH PREVIEW: Tranmere Rovers are next up at Brunton Park

A look ahead at this weekend's opponents

15 September 2018

Tranmere have lost just once on their return to the Football League as they look to build on last season’s Conference play-off final success.

James NorwoodThey are though, draw specialists, with four of their seven league outings ending in stalemates.

Reports suggest they have played well in all of their games so far, with defeats in the Carabao Cup and Checkatrade Trophy the only blots to their copy book thus far.

Both of their September league outings have ended in 1-1 draws, but with seven goals in all competitions striker James Norwood will definitely be one to watch at the weekend.

Away Fan Guide

Tranmere supporters, click HERE for your downloadable Away Fan Guide ahead of your visit to Brunton Park.


It feels like déjà vu once again!

United fans will welcome defender Mark Ellis, keeper Shamal George and striker Cole Stockton back to Brunton Park at the weekend. Mark Ellis

Ellis, a favourite with United supporters, scored three goals in just under 75 appearances for the club during his 33-month stay and endeared himself to the Brunton faithful having worked his way back into the side following loan spells at Forest Green and Leyton Orient.

Liverpool stopper Shamal George made seven appearances for the Cumbrians during a half-season loan spell last year, and Cole Stockton was a late summer departure, making his return to Prenton Park, following eight months up here with us. He scored once in his 13 appearances in a Carlisle shirt.


Manager’s thoughts

John SheridanSpeaking ahead of the game, United boss John Sheridan said: “I know Micky Mellon really well. He’s a good manager and he’ll have his side ready for this game.

“They’ve come up last season and they’ll be looking to build on that. They’ve already shown that they’re hard to beat and they’ll be very disciplined and organised, and they’ll look to bring the game to us whenever they have the ball.

“As ever it’ll be down to us and what we do. This is the first of a run of home games and it presents an opportunity for us to build a bit of momentum. We know the areas we need to work on, but we also know we look a good when we do the basics well and when we make the right decisions.

“I think it’s another game the fans can look forward to.”

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Did You Know?

Dixie Dean+ A young Birkenhead player named William Ralph ‘Dixie’ Dean made his debut for Tranmere Rovers at the age of just 16 years and 355 days in 1924.

+ Following the expansion of the Football League in 1921 to a Third Division each for the north and south of England, Rovers were accepted into the Third Division (North) and played their first fixture against Crewe Alexandra at Prenton Park on 27 August 1921.

+ In 1999/2000, under former-hero John Aldridge, victories over a succession of Premier League sides led not only to a place in the quarter finals of the FA Cup, but a place in the final of the Worthington Cup - the first time Rovers had ever reached a major cup final. However, after coming from a goal down to equalise, Tranmere eventually lost the match 2-1 against Leicester City.


Head to Head

Regular combatants, the clubs have met a total of 85 times in all competitions over the years. It’s another fairly even split with United slightly edging 34 victories to 32 for Rovers.

  Carlisle wins Draws Tranmere wins
League 31 16 27
Cup 0 2 0
FA Cup 1 0 3
League Cup 2 1 2
Total 34 19 32

The last time we met was in February 2015, at Prenton Park, when a quickfire double from Charlie Wyke just after the break secured a 2-0 away victory for the Blues. It came at a price as Kyle Dempsey received his marching orders deep into time added on.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

The league meeting at Brunton Park earlier that season was a tense affair, but a nice finish from David Amoo with just 20 minutes left to play proved to be the difference as the Cumbrians battled their way to a hard-earned three points.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

The trio of meetings from that season was completed, again at Prenton Park, when the sides came together in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy. Brad Potts got on the end of a good move to cancel out a first half Max Power goal, but it was Tranmere who progressed as they got the better of the penalty shoot-out, winning by 5-4 at the end of a very long night.

Watch the highlights of that game here:


Man in the middle:

Matthew DonohueThe referee for this game is Mr Matthew Donohue.

He has taken charge of five games so far this season and has shown 19 yellow cards and one red.

New to the Football League this season, this is his first visit to Brunton Park as our match referee. 

Referee – Matthew Donohue
Assistant Referee 1 – Graeme Fyvie
Assistant Referee 2 – Helen Byrne
Fourth Official – Paul Byrne


Ticket information:

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Match Reports

MATCH REPORT: United 0 - 2 Tranmere

Report from the Saturday afternoon home game

16 September 2018

United returned to league action at Brunton Park for the first time in over a fortnight as they entertained last season's successful Conference play-off finalists Tranmere Rovers.

Manager John Sheridan made one change to the starting line-up from last week's away victory at Cambridge with Hallam Hope, back from international duty with Barbados, in for the unlucky George Glendon.

An accurate long ball from Parkes invited the Blues forward early in the game when McNulty went for safety first with a clearing header. The throw eventually came to Devitt and he almost released Nadesan as he beat his man and spread the play. Monthe stretched a leg to make an interception.

Tranmere showed for the first time when Stockton bounced a long ball back for Norwood to shoot. He went for it from distance but Collin was happy to watch it skid past his upright. Banks was next to try his luck, when he found a yard of space, but his venomous shot was always rising high.

Jennings put one right at Collin in what was a good spell for the away side, but a quick release from the stopper sparked a fluid home attack. Yates held it up before giving it to Devitt, and he teased a beauty of a cross to the back stick. Bennett was there with a header which looped over Davies and frustratingly onto the top of the bar.

Former-Blue Cole Stockton forced a fingertip save out of Collin when he took a touch before unleashing a rasping drive as Tranmere tried to get forward with more purpose. The keeper did enough to protect his top corner.

The Blues thought they'd done enough when Hope somehow got to a ball over the top which was heading out of play. His high delivery was met by Nadesan, and confusion followed as the Rovers defence failed to get it clear. A whipped and instinctive cross from Hope was just an inch too far in front of Nadesan as he lunged to try to get the touch.

United started to pass the ball around with purpose as the half wore on and Devitt almost unlocked the door with a wonderful defence splitting bullet which had Hope very interested. Davies was off his line quickly to smother the danger.

Etuhu had a stinger blocked on the edge of the box moments after a Devitt toe poke had met the same resistance, but Tranmere were opened right up when Bennett beat the offside trap to get onto the end of a chipped Devitt cross. Nadesan was unmarked and dead central but the big striker took the more difficult option of going for goal. His downward header angled into the side netting as Nadesan asked why he hadn't been played in.

A slick corner routine, which saw Devitt bounce a short one off Hope, put the midfielder in space on the angle of the box. He went for the top corner but it dipped just a moment too late.

United kept the pressure on, with Yates and Hope having swapped wings, but Rovers kept things tight and close at the back and the sides went into the half time break deadlocked at 0-0.

Good work from Nadesan, as he nicked the ball from McNulty after the restart, brought a cross which was just too far away from Bennett. 

Ollie Banks had a shot deflected behind at the other end, as he dropped a shoulder to try to lose Liddle, and the captain was there to mop up the danger when the corner came in.

Carlisle continued to probe and a crunching drive from Bennett had to be blocked as it headed for the nets. Nadesan had crosses blocked, as did Hope, and Sowerby was sent on to try to offer a different type of approach.

The visitors enjoyed a good spell on the hour mark but strong defending meant chances were limited. It was Devitt who lifted the home fans when Sowerby and Etuhu combined to give him a clean sight. His shot had to be watched as it flashed past the post.

A neat switch of play from left to right saw Etuhu and Sowerby link up again as Liddle drifted in on the overlap. His delivery deserved better but it skimmed off Bennett's head and McNulty was able to clear.

The Cumbrians started to ask the major questions and Gillesphey expertly bent his run to put a dinked ball towards the back stick. Bennett threw himself at it but he couldn’t make the connection.

Captain Gary Liddle took matters into his own hands as he started a run which saw him play a lovely one-two with Campbell as he broke into the box. He clipped the ball over the advacning Scott Davies and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot as the keeper got a touch to send the marauding defender tumbling to the floor. Jamie Devitt stepped up to take the spot kick but he was thwarted by an excellent save from the stopper.

Disaster struck at the other end within minutes when a seemingly harmless cross caught Tom Parkes completely undecided. He hung his boot at it and left Adam Collin with no chance as it bounced its way into the bottom corner.

Carlisle threw men forward and Campbell had a shot blocked as he tried to find a gap from a Bennett nod down. 

But the Rovers lead was doubled, and the points claimed, when veteran Paul Mullin weaved his way into the area with three in his wake. Collin could do nothing as a superb strike nestled sweetly in the back of his net.

Collin had to save late in the day from Norwood and Mullin, and 17-year-old Liam McCarron came on to make his league debut as United continued to try to get something from the game.



Tranmere Rovers - Parkes (og 81), Mullin (85)



Carlisle United - Devitt (61), Parkes (83)

Tranmere Rovers - Banks (59), Davies (76)



Carlisle United - Collin, Liddle, Gerrard, Parkes, Gillesphey, Yates (Sowerby 54), Etuhu, Devitt, Hope, Nadesan (Campbell 73), Bennett (McCarron 90). Subs - O'Reilly, Miller, Glendon, Slater.

Tranmere Rovers - Davies, McNulty, Monthe, Norwood, Jennings, McCullough, Caprice, Mottley-Henry (Smith 73), Stockton (Mullin 69), Bakayogo, Banks. Subs - George, Buxton, Ellis, Gilmour, Cole.


Referee - Mr Matthew Donohue

Attendance - 5,187 (796 away fans)

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