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30 July 2022 Venue Brunton Park Attendance

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

PREVIEW: We take a look at our first opponents

Crawley Town head north at the weekend

29 July 2022

It's an early start to the League Two season with the first game - a home meeting with Crawley Town - heading our way this Saturday with July not yet out of the way.

Match Sponsor - Story Contracting
Click HERE to visit the official Story Contracting website.
Match Ball Sponsor - Border Brite
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Match Ball Sponsor - Futamura
Click HERE to visit the official Futamura website.
Match Ball Delivery System - Ascott Transport Ltd
Click HERE to visit the ATL official website.


Crawley appointed Arsenal U23s boss Kevin Betsy as their new manager on an initial two-year deal at the beginning of June.

The 44-year-old replaced John Yems, who left after questions about his conduct were raised.

Betsy previously coached at Fulham prior to taking the lead role with England's under-18 age groups. He joined the Gunners in the summer of 2021 and steered their academy team to a third-placed finish in Premier League 2.

Dan Micciche followed him into the club having had a short spell of management with MK Dons. He worked with Betsy at Arsenal, with the pair reunited under the new ownership of US cryptocurrency investors WAGMI United LLC. Co-founders Preston Johnson and Eben Smith drove that takeover just over three months ago.

Defender Travis Johnson became the new manager's first signing, when he was released by Crewe, and Ash Nadesan extended his stay with a new two-year deal the same day.

Striker Dom Telford left Newport for the People's Pension Stadium on a three-year contract, and he was followed by Swindon defender Dion Conroy, who pennned for two seasons.

Liverpool teenager James Balagizi signed a season-long loan deal, and another permanent deal was made with keeper Corey Addai who marked his return from Denmark with a two-year agreement.

A trial period for trio Ben Wells, Jayden Davis and Moe Shubbar ended in success with 12-month contracts all round, and free agent Milton Mason, a winger most recently with MK Dons, ended his football exile last week when he agreed a two-year stay. 

who watch

We've gone for Ash Nadesan, who was a favourite with United fans through two separate loan spells that covered the whole of 2018 (he netted 13 goals in 43 appearances overall).

He became a real handful, and he ended last season with nine goals from 42 appearances.

There's competition for starting places this time round, so he might not get the nod this weekend.

Fast and strong, he'll be on the shoulders of the defenders as he looks to make things happen if he is selected, and we must remember that he can chip in with goals or assists as well.


Click HERE to purchase an audio match pass which will allow you to listen to this game via our streaming iFollow service.

With match commentary provided by BBC Radio Cumbria, this is a fantastic way to follow your team through the season.

Match audio passes are available for ALL EFL league games - click HERE to find out more about this season’s iFollow United service.


  Carlisle wins Draws Crawley wins
League 10 7 3
Total 10 7 3

Ash Nadesan scored before the half hour when the Red Devils came to Brunton Park in January 2021, and the Blues had to remain patient as they kept knocking on a seemingly closed door. Lewis Alessandra raised the roof with a late, late equaliser.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

United were in Crawley in September 2021 and the hosts took a lead into the break thanks to Tom Nichols. Jon Mellish equalised with just seven minutes to go, but Nick Tsaroulla netted a last-ditch winner with seconds left on the clock.

You can watch the highlights from that game here:

March 2021 brought Crawley to Brunton Park once again and they were put to the sword by goals from Joe Riley and Omari Patrick.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

United's trip to Crawley in November 2020 proved to be productive as a goal just before the break from Rhys Bennett provided a springboard. Josh Kayode and Aaron Hayden made it 3-0, and a bad day became worse for the Red Devils when David Sesay received late marching orders.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

These sides came together down in Crawley just before the lockdown, in February 2020. It was a tight, tense 0-0 draw, with both teams missing chances to snatch it.

Watch the highlights from that game here:

Priot to that the Red Devils headed to Brunton Park for the opening game of the 2019/20 season. Harry McKirdy opened the scoring with just six minutes on the clock, but the Reds were back on terms just 10 minutes later when Beryly Lubala pounced. The lead was restored just before half time by Stefan Scougall, and that's how it stayed with the hosts holding on to take the three points. A feisty encounter saw Luke Young sent off in time added on.

Watch the highlights from that game here: 

Carlisle United 4 – 2 Crawley Town, 27 April 2019

Crawley Town 2 – 3 Carlisle United, 22 December 2018

Carlisle United 2 – 2 Crawley Town, 17 March 2018

Crawley Town 0 – 1 Carlisle United, 30 September 2017


Referee - Thomas Kirk
Assistant Referee 1 - Graeme Fyvie
Assistant Referee 2 - Paul Newhouse
Fourth Official - Matt Corlett
Observer - Clive Oliver

Mr Kirk steps up to life in the EFL this season, having taken charge of some tough encounters in the National League last term.

Probably most enjoyable will have been the play-off semi-final between Solihull Moors and Chesterfield at the end of May. 

The Spireites took an early lead but were put to the sword in what was an entertaining encounter that was allowed to flow by today's man in the middle. 


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Alternatively, you can purchase your tickets in-person here at our main ticket office during office hours (Pioneer Stand), online by clicking HERE, or over the phone by ringing 0330 094 5930 (option 1).

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Match Reports

MATCH REPORT: United 1 - 0 Crawley

Report from the Saturday afternoon season opener

30 July 2022

The Blues kicked their season off with a home game, with Crawley Town the visitors to Brunton Park on what was another muggy summer's afternoon.

There were debuts for Fin Back, Ben Barclay, Ryan Edmondson, Tomas Holy and Owen Moxon as United boss Paul Simpson went with the expected wing-back shape.

Missing through injury and illness were Jamie Devitt, Brennan Dickenson and Tobi Sho-Silva, with Josh Dixon and Joel Senior still on the long road to recovery from their ACL set-backs.

Keeper Michael Kelly was on the bench, having agreed his new deal ahead of the registration deadline, and there was also a place with the finishers for youth second-year Nic Bollado, who had shone through pre-season when he made the step up to train and play with the first-team group.

The Blues started strongly and they had a great chance on four minutes when Back used strength to keep the ball after Guy and Dennis had combined high up the pitch. The wing back stepped into the area and found Edmondson, but his first-time shot was parried by the alert Ellery Balcombe.

Carlisle kept the escape route shut as they harried the red shirts, and a ball into the box was contested by Edmondson. He saw a poke with his toe come back off Omole, and a half clearance from him spooned into the air, off Moxon, when he closed things down. Dennis controlled it before clipping his effort into the bottom corner from 12-yards out.

United came again when Barclay floated a beauty of a pass from deep. Edmondson stuck a boot out to meet it and the keeper was relieved to see it bobble past his upright.

Corners from Moxon caused problems early in the piece, with the away team twice fortunate to get dipping deliveries away. The recovery from the second swipe put Gibson beyond his marker, and his cut back had to be dealt with as Edmondson and Dennis converged.

It was a forceful opening from the Cumbrians and Dennis turned a difficult pass into a chance to cross when he stretched out a boot to bring the ball into his path. He scampered to get there, and Back was unlucky as he met the stinging driven pass. Edmondson then had a shot charged down in the scramble that followed, with the away nets living a charmed life.

A surging run from Callum Guy caught Crawley light at the back once again when he came out of a 50:50 with the ball at his feet. Edmondson overlapped and returned the favour with a delightful pass. Guy was off balance as he chipped it over the target from close range.

Guy was at the heart of it once more when he tackled, looked up and pinged it to Dennis. The striker got the ball out of his feet and he forced a fingertip save out of Balcombe as he aimed for the bottom corner.

The visitors showed for their first threat of the day on 28 minutes when Telford ghosted into the box, leaving space for Tilley to exploit. He went for it from 20-yards but it clipped a heel, and the outside of the post, on its way to safety.

United carved the defence open on 33 minutes when Gibson stepped through two challenges inside his own half. He continued his run as he bounced it off Edmondson, but Balcombe came off his line to spread himself and make the save. Edmondson was onto the rebound in a flash but he had two on him, and his effort was smothered.

Midfielder Owen Moxon spun a corner towards Barclay ahead of the break, and Francomb had to stretch to nod it away. Armer swung his boot through it as it dropped from high, and Edmondson wasn't too far away when he tried to cheekily divert it goalwards as he lurked on the penalty spot.

Tilley picked out Telford when Crawley edged their way to the edge of the box, but Holy was comfortable as he watched a snapshot whisk high and into the Warwick.

Telford was wayward moments later after Powell and Nichols had helped to make room for a drive. It screwed off the top of his boot and swirled beyond the angle of post and bar.

Forward Kris Dennis made a chance from nothing when he pressed high at the start of the second half. His reward was to steal the ball, and he wasted no time in shooting as he dropped a shoulder to shake off his man. Substitute keeper Corey Addai got both hands to it, and he sent it into the sky. 

United thought they'd done enough to score on 53 minutes when Gibson skipped clear in midfield. He fed it to Edmondson, and Addai was stranded when a corker of a cross bobbled across the face of goal. Armer arrived late, and the stopper was able to get a leg in the way when the return effort angled low.

Guy was felled as he looked to break the lines when the Blues came again, but Gibson was disappointed when he blazed the 23-yard free kick over the bar.

The chances kept coming and Gibson, a constant threat, was past his marker, head down and with just one thing in mind when he linked with Moxon. Addai again made the save, and Dennis swiped the parry wide as he came under pressure deep inside the box.

It was wonderful stuff from Moxon, Gibson and Back on the hour as they broke, almost with devastating effect. Gibson was checked as he went into the area from the Moxon through ball, but Back took over. He wriggled past two, but the cut back was cut out just in time.

Hearts were in mouths at the other end when Tilley went for it from 19-yards after Nadesan had picked him out. It hit Moxon, and Holy could on watch in hope, which proved to be fruitful, as it swerved into the side netting.

Vision from Moxon invited to Patrick to chase, with a measured high ball into space, as the hosts worked hard. The forward controlled with his thigh and wrestled his way past Francomb. The angle was suddenly tight and Addai was able to get himself in the way.

Gibson was pinpoint with a cross on 79 minutes that had the Red Devils at sixes and sevens. Feeney had stayed forward, and he got the slightest of touches. Addai thanked his lucky stars as it struck him, then somehow found its way past the post.

The offside flag cut short celebrations with eight minutes left to play when Edmondson stabbed one home from close range. Patrick, Back and Gibson had all knocked and knocked on the door, with huge slices of luck falling the way of the away team, but the assistant referee was there quickly to make his decision after it had eventually crossed the white line.

There were loud appeals for a penalty when substitute Corey Whelan was stopped in his tracks late in the day, when he linked with Back, but the referee was having none of it.

Gibson rattled one wide as Carlisle continued to press for a second, and Crawley almost nicked one in time added on when Tilley sent a free kick into the mix. Conroy got a head to it but it was wide, and Holy remained untested.

The Cumbrians looked fit, solid and disciplined and they deservedly received a huge ovation as the final whistle blew on their opening day victory.


Match Sponsor - Story Contracting
Match Ball Sponsor - Border Brite
Match Ball sponsor - Futamura



Carlisle United - Dennis (5)



Carlisle United - Armer (22)

Crawley Town - Balagizi (55), Omole (74), Tilley (78)



Carlisle United - Holy, Barclay, Feeney (c), Mellish, Back, Gibson (Hilton 90), Guy (Whelan 85), Moxon, Armer, Dennis (Patrick 64), Edmondson. Subs - Kelly (gk), Ellis, Bell, Bollado.

Crawley Town - Balcombe (Addai 46), Conroy, Francomb (Adebuwale 87), Tilley, Powell (Hessenthaler 46), Nichols (c), Nadesan, Omole (Appiah 76), Telford, Balagizi (Jenks 70), Johnson. Subs - Francillette.


Match officials

Referee - Thomas Kirk
Assistant Referee 1 - Graeme Fyvie
Assistant Referee 2 - Paul Newhouse
Fourth Official - Matt Corlett
Observer - Clive Oliver


Attendance - 6,403 (166)

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