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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

19 December 2020 Venue The innocent New Lawn Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW: Long trip ahead of Christmas

Forest Green for the Blues

18 December 2020

This weekend on the fixture calendar always seems to throw up a trek, and it's no different this time round as we head to Nailsworth and the home of Forest Green.


Of the five away games we've played down there over the years we've won three and drawn two - possibly not enough hard evidence to say we're a bogey team, but definitely a place where we tend to do well, whatever the reason for that may be.

Rovers, of course, became the world's first football club to achieve 'carbon neutral' status in 2017, having already turned to an all vegan menu around their match day catering facilities two years earlier.

October saw Massive Attack's Robert Del Naja join the club as their artistic director, with the band having commuted around their European tour venues by train, to reduce their carbon footprint. 

Back in September Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin became the club's second largest stakeholder as he invested in the club on an agenda of 'seeking to raise the environmental agenda in football' having recently raised funds to plant 60,000 trees in the Amazonian Rain Forest.


Like Carlisle United, Forest Green have been bouncing around the top seven spots pretty much all season as they once again mount a solid challenge.

Tuesday night took them to Port Vale, where they scored both goals in the game ... one of them being an own goal with Aaron Collins netting just before the break to cancel out a nightmare moment for skipper Chris Stokes.

Leading into that fixture they had put together a run of five league games without defeat (that has obviously now been extended to six), and were level pegging with the Blues on points earned at that stage.

Away results have been steady, with victories picked up at Harrogate and Southend as part of their climb up the table. 

who watch

We've said this before, but the lively Jamille Matt always seems to find the back of the net when he plays against us.

He's bagged eight times already this season, with his last strike coming from the penalty spot in the 2-0 home win over Cambridge last weekend.

Mobile, and with the knack of being in the right pace at the right time, he gets the nod as our one to watch this weekend.


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With match commentary also provided by BBC Radio Cumbria, this is a fantastic way to follow your team through these unprecedented behind closed doors fixtures.

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The 2019/20 season was one of those years where it felt like we played each other at least 200 times, and the fourth occasion we came together was again down at the Lawn, and it was a thumping away win for the Cumbrians as Josh Kayode complemented a Nathan Thomas hat-trick, with the score ending at 4-1.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

December 2019's FA Cup second round replay went the way of the Blues courtesy of a first-ever goal for the club for big defender Aaron Hayden. It was nip and tuck, but Carlisle went through to face Championship side Cardiff City in the third round.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

United had to come from behind when Aaron Collins netted with just 10 minutes on the clock at Nailsworth in the November 2019 second round FA Cup clash. Goals either side of the break from Nathan Thomas put the Cumbrians in the ascendency, but an own goal from Gethin Jones just two minutes after Thomas had bagged his second left the teams with it all to do again as the game ended 2-2.

Unfortunately we do not hold the rights to the first round match footage.

It was a stalemate here at Brunton Park when these sides met in league action in September 2019. Chances came and went, but the feisty encounter went without goals as five players were booked and one sent off (James Morton).

Watch the highlights from that game here:

United came away from the New Lawn with a 1-1 draw in March 2019, having largely dominated the game. Nathan Thomas bagged the goal, but there were a number of opportunities missed by the Blues as they battled, but ultimately failed, to take all three points.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

It was Rovers who took the honours when they came north in November 2018, earlier in that season, with goals from Ben Morris and Carl Winchester giving them a two-goal cushion. A late penalty from Jamie Devitt gave the Blues some hope, but the away side held out to take all three points.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

The December 2017 away trip to the New Lawn brought an early Christmas present for the Blue Army as Richie Bennett headed home what turned out to be the winner just before the half hour.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

It was the same scoreline here at Brunton Park in January 2018 with the only goal of the game coming in almost the same minute. This time it was Jamie Devitt who found the back of the net when he arrived late to smash a volley into the bottom corner as the ball fell nicely at his feet.

Watch the highlights from that game here:


Referee - Alan Young
Assistant Referee 1 - Andrew Laver
Assistant Referee 2 - Conor Farrell
Fourth Official - Kevin Johnson

Alan YoungOur referee for this game is Mr Alan Young.

So far this season he has shown 69 yellow cards and two reds from 16 games.

Now in his third season as a Football League official, this is just the second time he's taken charge of a game involving Carlisle United.

Our first meeting with him was at Home Park in October 2019. Plymouth won the game 2-0, and Jack Iredale and Jarrad Branthwaite had their names taken for the Blues.


Away fans are not permitted at this fixture. See above for details on how to get your iFollow match pass so that you can watch the lads live, as it happens, in the comfort of your own living room.

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Match Reports

MATCH REPORT: Rovers 1 - 0 United

Report from the New Lawn away day

19 December 2020

It wouldn't be Christmas for the Blues if it didn't involve a sleigh ride somewhere, and this year it was the mammoth trip to the New Lawn to face Forest Green Rovers.

With Jon Mellish missing through suspension that meant a return to the starting eleven for Gime Toure, with the team otherwise unchanged from last Saturday.

The hosts were on the attack immediately and Adams showed awareness to take the ball under control as Riley stopped the initial move. Bailey arrived to steam through the middle, unmarked, and the pass to send him on his way was inch perfect. He let one go but his 17-yard goal bound effort was deflected wide of the upright by a superbly timed challenge from Anderton.

United responded with a good spell which saw them keep the green shirts pegged back. Guy was typically strong in midfield as he won a 50:50 challenge, and his pass to Toure eventually brought a long throw from Kayode. 

He didn't disappoint as his dipper caused all kinds of confusion, and a blocked volley from the penalty spot from Bennett screwed kindly to Toure. He punted it with venom but McGee somehow made the point blank save.

Rovers were awarded a disputed free kick tight by the right hand touchline just before the quarter hour and Cadden swung it into the danger area. Stokes was up to meet it but his header was dealt with by Hayden.

Toure had a shot charged down when another Kayode launch sat up in front of him, and Alessandra clipped one over the bar from distance as the visitors stayed on the front foot.

United were a whisker away on 25 minutes when Alessandra poked the ball to Toure. He spread play with an out-pass to Armer, and his left-footed cross was met by a leap from Kayode. McGee was stranded as it dropped just the wrong side of the post.

It was the Cumbrians who asked the next question when a huge kick forward was nicked the way of Alessandra. He took a touch, on the edge of the box, before a lob left the keeper rooted to the spot. He was relieved to see it angle over his bar.

There was incident at the other end when Cadden floated another precise free kick into the mix. It evaded everybody and it was left to bounce harmlessly behind.

Good work from Toure put the away team back on the attack, and he won a corner which Guy delivered. Kayode was wrestled to the floor by Matt, when Armer put it back in, and the shot on the turn from the 22-yard free kick from Alessandra left Adams with plenty to think about as he took it full on in the unmentionables. 

Both sides went for it and a cross from Cadden had to be put away by Anderton in front of his own nets, and Matt was pulled up for a foul as he tussled for the resulting corner.

Tenacity from Riley saw him come away with the ball just before the break, but his shot on the run curled wide as it gathered pace.

Into the second half and a clap of thunder and a flash of lightning accompanied the starting whistle, as did a Carlisle corner. The slightest of touches from Stokes was enough to prevent a shot from Kayode as the ball zipped in.

The Carlisle striker was at the other end to help out with the defending when Cadden flighted a cross at Matt. A sweep of the boot took the ball to safety.

United had a Toure goal chalked off on 51 minutes when Hayden was judged to have climbed on his man when he put a deep Guy corner back into the mix.

A flurry of crosses followed from the visitors and that saw them put good pressure on as Guy peppered the area. McGee twice punched, but he was at his best when he spread himself to parry a 12-yard thunderbolt from Riley as he worked his way through into a shooting area.

Midfielder Joe Riley was there again as a storm from the heavens descended on the New Lawn, but a stinger from distance was just wide with the keeper well beaten on this occasion.

Things opened up for Matt temporarily at the away end as Rovers countered, but Farman went full length to beat a swirling effort away.

Armer defended excellently as Adams centred, on the run out wide, in what was a good period for Rovers. He needed to get there first as two strikers converged in an attempt to put the loose pieces into the back of the net.

Fortune favoured United as Collins was suddenly presented with an opening inside the box. He kept it low and he couldn't believe his eyes as it smashed back off the base of the upright before skittering across the face of the empty goal. 

It somehow stayed out, and Carlisle immediately moved forward with Anderton in attendance. His delivery took a deflection, but Armer was there to recover the attempted clearance. His neat through ball found Toure, and he dropped a shoulder before sending it low. He also couldn't believe it as the ball angled past the post.

Superb agility from Farman saw him pull off a wonder save as Collins went one way, then the other. A rasper was headng into the roof of the net until the keeper adjusted his body to get a hand to the ball.

It was a set piece that was the undoing of United on 76 minutes when a high ball was kept alive. It came to Matt, just two yards out, and he was able to send the ball over the line as he dropped to the floor with his back to the target.

Matt put a header over moments later, when Cadden beat his man to pick him out, and the visitors were almost caught on the break when Rovers broke in numbers from a misplaced free kick. Farman saved at the feet of Collins as he burst through, and he was up quickly to gather the attempted curler from Adams.



Forest Green Rovers - Matt (76)



Forest Green Rovers - Ricgardson (50)

Carlisle United - Alessandra (19), Riley (44), Farman (50), Charters (90)



Forest Green Rovers - McGee, Bernard, Sweeney, Stokes (c), Adams, Collins (Winchester 90), Cadden, Matt, Bailey (Whitehouse 75), Godwin-Malife, Richardson. Subs - Thomas (gk), Stevens, Moore-Taylor, Young, Wagstaff.

Carlisle United - Farman, Armer, Hayden, Bennett, Anderton (c), Riley, Guy, Patrick (Reilly 79), Toure (Charters 85), Alessandra, Kayode. Subs - Norman (gk), Hunt, Dixon, Furman, Obiero.


Match officials

Referee - Alan Young
Assistant Referee 1 - Joe Clark
Assistant Referee 2 - Conor Farrell
Fourth Official - Kevin Johnson


Attendance - 920

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