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HERE'S LOOKING AT YOU: Cheltenham Town

We take a closer look at Good Friday's opponents

29 March 2018

With United’s unbeaten record now stretching to seven games, Keith Curle will be looking to maintain that run as the Blues travel to face Cheltenham Town on Good Friday.

United’s last two games have ended in draws meaning the Cumbrians will be keen to pick up three points to help sustain their play-off push. 

But they will be faced with a Cheltenham side who are going through a run of good form themselves and have picked up some eye-catching results in recent week. 

We put Gary Johnson’s side under the spotlight ahead of our trip to the LCI Rail Stadium: 

Comfortably in Mid-Table 

Having only avoided relegation by four points last season, it has been a far more successful campaign for Cheltenham this time around as they comfortably in 15th place – 14 points above the drop zone. 

While there have been sparks of brilliance from the Robins, they have struggled to find any consistency and it is only in the last few weeks that Johnson’s side have shown some steady form. 

Their fine attacking form – Cheltenham’s tally of 58 scored is the sixth highest in Sky Bet League Two – has been somewhat undone by a leaky defence that has shipped 57 goals. 

But nonetheless, the Robins will prove a tough test and will be keen to push up the table in the final weeks of the season. 

Battle of the Unbeaten Records 

Both teams will put their respective unbeaten records on the line weekend as two of the form sides in League Two meet. 

While the Blues have gone seven games unbeaten, Cheltenham themselves are on a five-game streak without defeat. 

That run has included some eye-catching results including triumphs over play-off chasing Crawley and Swindon and draws with high-flying Notts County and Luton. 

Such form means that both sides will be full of confidence heading into this clash, which could well lead to an intriguing encounter. 

United’s good record to continue? 

The Cumbrians have lost just once since 2008 against Cheltenham, and will be hoping that form can continue this Friday. 

United have picked up five wins from the last ten meetings between the two sides, with Cheltenham having won only two. 

There have been 21 league meetings of the two teams, with Carlisle claiming seven wins compared to the Robins’ six - while eight games have ended in draws. 

But it’s the Blues who have had the better of the recent meetings, though, and they’ll be hoping for a similar result this time around.

Our meeting earlier this season ended in a 3-0 win for United, thanks to goals from Reggie Lambe and Tom Miller as well as an own goal.

Watch the highlights from this season's 3-0 home win here: 

Over Ten Years … 

While Carlisle’s overall record against Cheltenham has been positive in recnet years, you have to go back over a decade to find the last time we beat the Robins on their own patch. 

That victory came in 2007 as Joe Garner’s strike wrapped up a 1-0 win for the Cumbrians, with the following four trips to Gloucstershire ending in two Cheltenham wins and two draws. 

Ones to Watch 

+ Harry Pell - The midfielder was a key figure in the Robins’ promotion from the National League in 2016 and continued his fine form in League Two last season. Comfortable centrally or on the right, Pell was wanted by Blackpool during the summer transfer window last year, but turned down the Seasiders. Always looking to chip in with an assist or goal, the 25-year-old will need to be watched carefully. 

+ Mohamed Eisa - Plucked from non-league by Johnson during the summer, Eisa had a good track record before stepping up to the Football League and immediately demonstrated his worth to the Robins with five goals in pre-season. He has continued that fine form in competitive fixtures, with the lively striker having netted 20 times this season. Eisa is a handful for any defence with his pace and deadly finishing proving a powerful combination. 

+ Brian Graham - Another summer addition, Graham moved to the LCI Rail Stadium from Hibernian and could partner Eisa up to. Having proven himself north of the border, the striker is now looking to make a name for himself in England. At 29-years-old, Graham offers some valuable experience having represented the likes of Dundee United and Ross County in the past. An old-school target man, Graham’s physical presence could prove the ideal accompaniment to Eisa’s sheer pace.

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