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Kick off 13:00 (UK)

31 October 2020 Venue St James Park Attendance

Kick off 13:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW: The long trip to face the Grecians

Mammoth trip on Saturday

29 October 2020

For those who missed the news earlier this week - this Saturday's fixture will now kick off at 1pm, so make sure you have the Blu Tac under the bum, the munchies sorted and the iFollow log-in up and running for that earlier start time.


  Carlisle wins Draws Exeter wins
League 19 17 25
Cup 0 1 1
Total 19 18 26

These two sides have had some great meetings in recent seasons, with Tuesday and Thursday night camel treks for both clubs thrown in along the way for good measure.

Exeter hold the bragging rights in terms of league wins, with 26 to United's 19, but the Blues have been stubborn on their away trips to St James Park in recent years and have lost just two of their last five appearances down there.


The Grecians are on a seven game unbeaten league run following their 1-1 draw at Leyton Orient on Tuesday night.

That impressive spell has seen them bag 12 goals, with a nil-nil away draw at Walsall the only time they failed to register on the scoresheet. 

It's little surprise to see them loitering around the top seven spots once again, as they seem to make the play-offs almost every year. Last season, of course, saw them lose out to Northampton in the final as part of the hastily arranged end to a very strange season.

With a new stand now in place, it was revealed at the end of last month that they are in discussions with the local council about a potential move to a new site as part of a city wide feasibiity study. 

And with a reported £4m windfall heading their way following the transfer of Ollie Watkins to Aston Villa from Brentfod, they could be a club to watch for a number of years to come.

who watch

Midfielder Joel Randall has had a good start to the campaign with four goals against his name already.

The 20-year-old had picked up valuable experience last season with loan moves to Weymouth and Weston-super-Mare, and he's shown that he's ready to kick on again as he cements his place in the team.

A player who can play out wide or in a more central, he's our one to watch this weekend.

Ryan Bowman, who we all know so well, is another who has had a good start as he leads the attacking line. At the other end defender Tom Parkes will be on duty. Tom played 84 games for the Blues in his two-year stay.


Click HERE to purchase a match pass which will allow you to watch this game in full HD via our streaming iFollow service.

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.

Match passes are available for ALL EFL league games during this restricted attendance period. Click HERE to find out more about this season’s iFollow United service.

Codes will be issued to those who are eligible to watch this fixture free. More details on free codes, and how to redeem them - and on how to purchase a match pass - are HERE.


Due to the Covid-19 lockdown, these teams locked horns just once during the 2019/20 campaign. That was in September where late goals from Aaron Martin and Nicky Law cancelled out Olufela Olomola's earlier equaliser, after Lee Martin had opened the scoring.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

Prior to that, it was another Brunton Park meeting in February 2019, when a bright start from the Grecians brought a stunning goal from Nicky Law. His initial effort from a free kick struck the wall, but he reacted smartly to volley the rebound into the bottom corner. Carlisle pushed and pushed for an equaliser, and they eventually got the reward they deserved when Devitt smashed an unstoppable set piece into the top corner.

The first game of the 2018/19 season took us to Exeter for an encounter which was played out in blistering heat. Early goals for the hosts from Nicky Law and Jonathan Forte set the Blues on the back foot, but Richie Bennett glanced a header into the net before the break to keep the Cumbrians in the hunt. There were chances to level it in the second period but Tristan Abrahams scored late in the day to make sure Exeter took the points.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

Prior to that we were in Exeter once again towards the end of the 2017/18 campaign. It was a 1-1- draw, and Ashley Nadesan scored the Carlisle goal in what was a very keenly fought game.

Watch the highlights from that game here:


Referee - James Adcock
Assistant Referee 1 - Robert Dabbs
Assistant Referee 2 - Samuel Ogles
Fourth Official - Kevin Johnson

Our referee for this weekend is Mr James Adcock.

James has taken charge of seven games so far this season showing 13 yellow cards and one red.


This is a behind closed doors fixture. 

Please see above for details on how to purchase a live streaming match pass to see all of the action via our iFollow streaming service.


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Match Reports

MATCH REPORT: Grecians 1 - 0 United

Report from the Saturday afternoon away game

31 October 2020

United were unchanged for a fifth consecutive game as they headed to St James Park with a six-game unbeaten run to protect.

And United were out of the blocks quickly as Mellish made a run through midfield. He used Toure who managed to feed it on for Anderton to cross, despite being fouled. The delivery from the left back was touched on by Alessandra, and Toure earned a corner as he tried to put it back into the mix.

The Blues camped forward through the early exchanges, with Tanner and Riley providing options, and the midfielder had a shot charged down as a half clearance from a Kayode throw came his way. 

Exeter showed on six minutes when Williams chased down a through ball from Bowman. A shot came in from the forward as he dropped a shoulder on the angle, but Hayden got in the way to send it behind.

More defending was needed as the corner pinged around, but United stayed tight to clear their lines.

Defender Aaron Hayden survived a heavy collision with former Carlisle youth graduate Ryan Bowman, but he needed a prolonged period of treatment after a heavy fall.

United were straight back on the attack from the restart, and more dangerous forward play left Toure and Tanner with half a sight. Sparkes swung a boot to get the ball away but captain Nick Anderton was quickly onto the sliced clearance. Tom Parkes made sure the cross was dealt with as he stepped up for his team.

The Cumbrians worked hard to keep Exeter pegged back inside their own territory, and Alessandra was next to spark an attack when he spun his man on the halfway line. Toure took over, and he held it up for Riley to pull clear. A touch from the midfielder opened things up but his rasping drive was straight at Andresson. 

The earlier incident involving Hayden eventually took its toll when he made a signal towards the bench, and Max Hunt was called into action to take his place. And the big centre back was immediately in action as he made a volleyed clearance from a Randall cross. Paul Farman was well placed as Law tried the same moments later.

Exeter came again, with Law having switched to the right, and his cut back was met by Collins who poked a 19-yard snapshot right at the Carlisle stopper.

United enjoyed a good spell on the half hour, and a ball over the top from Tanner found Alessandra on the run. He used Mellish, but his low delivery was chopped out before Toure could pounce.

And the visitors went close when a slick moving involving Mellish, Riley and Tanner left the latter with room to pick his pass. Alessandra got on the end of it and he was disappointed to see his glanced header spin just the wrong side of the upright.

United had plenty of ball inside the home half, and Guy almost capitalised as he found himself to be one of very few players who had stayed deep. His long range effort clipped a heel and bent away for a corner kick. 

A series of visiting deliveries followed, but it wouldn't quite drop for the Blues, and McDonald completed a superb sliding clearance as the Grecians broke with Randall at the helm. The outswinging cross was primed for a Bowman strike until the defender made his timely intervention.

Determined stuff from Key saw him wind his way through two challenges moments later and he decided to go for broke as he reached the edge of the area. It had venom but he couldnt keep it down.

Guy caused trouble at the other end with a lofted corner that was met at the back stick by Hunt. The keeper flapped and got a touch as the header came at him, but he had much needed help from Parkes as they closed things down.

Deep into time added on for the first half Max Hunt sent a lovely ball down the touchline. Kayode took over, and he beat his man as he powered into the box. Toure latched onto the pass and his fizzed first-time effort from 10-yards out whisked just past the upright.

Carlisle had to be on their toes at the start of the second period when Randall surged through. He cut the ball back, but some excellent defending protected the target.

But the Grecians had the lead on 48 minutes when a Law free kick was caught on the volley by Parkes. It had made its way all the way through to the big centre half, and his swing of the boot left Farman with no chance. 

A great through ball from Alessandra sent Toure on his way as United looked for a response, and he beat his man well, but it ran too far and the move was ended.

Another great away chance went begging on 57 minutes when Guy overlapped to cross on the sprint. Alessandra missed a touch, but Mellish was there to get on the end of it as he arrived late. He tried to place it, from nine yards out, but the shot lacked power and Andresson was down smartly to gather.

Gime Toure was sent off on the hour mark when he felt he'd been stood on by Jake Taylor. His reaction brought an immediate red from referee James Adcock, and the away side were reduced to ten men.

United regrouped, and Alessandra did good work to make space when he twisted away to cross. Kayode and Mellish hunted but Andresson was off his line to claim it.

Another excellent Guy free kick was cleared just as Kayode made a move, and the break that followed saw Law clip Randall into space. His cross invited Bowman to throw a boot at it, but Farman scampered out to pluck it off the grass.

Farman was needed again when a massive kick from the Exeter keeper bounced high before skipping through. Bowman wanted it, but the Carlisle glovesman judged it superbly as he used his chest and then his hands to tidy things up.

Alessandra had dropped deep, and he provided another cross for Hunt to contend with as Carlisle forged again. The header was won, but Taylor was back to assist with the work that needed to be done.

Bowman was close with a header on the jump from a Sparkes cross as Carlisle ignored the fact that they had a one-man disadvantage as they really went for it, with Reilly added to the attacking mix with just over 15 minutes left to play, 

The testing Kayode long throw gave Guy a shooting chance as a launched lob was cleared his way, but he scuffed it under pressure. And the same avenue, this time from the right wing, saw McDonald recover the throw with a guided pass to Anderton. His cross was blocked, and the corner from Guy was punted away.

A goal-saving tackle from Tanner saw him get in the way after Williams had put it on a plate for Law, with United committed forward, and Patrick tried his luck at the other end after Alessandra had regained possession. The connection was crisp but it flew into the keeper's hands.

Exeter saw it through to claim their three points, and it was a disappointed group of blue shirts who left St James Park with nothing to show for their hard work.



Exeter City - Parkes (48)



Exeter City - Sparkes (53)

Carlisle United - (Toure sent off, straight red, 60)



Exeter City - Andresson, Sparkes, Law, Taylor (c), Collins, Williams, Bowman, Randall, Parkes, Sweeney, Key. Subs - Day (gk), Caprice, McArdle, Seymour, Jay, Fisher, Hartridge.

Carlisle United - Farman, Tanner, Hayden (Hunt 25), McDonald, Anderton (c), Riley (Patrick 74), Guy, Mellish (Reilly 74), Alessandra, Kayode, Toure. Subs - Dewhurst (gk), Armer, Furman, Obiero.


Match officials

Referee - James Adcock
Assistant Referee 1 - Robert Dabbs
Assistant Referee 2 - Samuel Ogles
Fourth Official - Kevin Johnson


Attendance - behind closed doors

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