Written by Liam O’Brien
First of all, I’d like to say hello and introduce myself to the website. My names Liam, and from now on I will be writing regularly on All Out Football, and start off with a preview of the upcoming games this weekend in League One…
GAMES IN FOCUS:
credit Matt Churchill
Thirty-Two goals were scored last weekend in League One, two of which were scored by Oxford in their victory over fierce rivals Swindon Town, Four were scored by Scunthorpe in their dismantling of Southend, and two were scored by Northampton, as they kept up their outstanding unbeaten run with a victory over Walsall.
It’s Northampton who we start off with, the Cobblers travel to Chesterfield on Saturday, looking to make it a splendid Thirty-Two games in a row without a loss. Alex Revell and Matt Taylor were on the scoresheet for the Northamptonshire outfit, as they followed on from their 3-2 victory over local rivals MK Dons in front of Sky cameras. Their opponents Chesterfield, have dipped in recent weeks after a positive start to the campaign however ended a run of 3 successive defeats with a 0-0 draw away at Oldham Athletic.
Northampton boss Rob Page on his sides start:
“Of course we’re happy with the start. It’s funny because you’re on a knife edge. When you draw five games, if you lose one it’s been a bad start to the season. If you win one it’s been a great start to the season. We’ve won two in a row now.”
League leaders Bolton are another side on an unbeaten run, having not lost so far this season. The Trotters had a dismal 2015/16 season, resulting in their relegation to the third tier. It’s unfamiliar territory for the Lancashire side, having reached the dizzying heights of Europe back in 2005, however Phil Parkinson’s side have been impressive so far, as they chase promotion back to the Championship at the first time of asking. They travel to Walsall, who will be disappointed with their start to the season so far, sitting in 20th place, having reached the playoffs last year.
Another side who dropped down to the third tier was MK Dons, the Dons have not made the best of starts back in League One, after only lasting one season at their highest ever level in their twelve year history. Their record since the start of 2015 is a miserable reading, with only five victories under their belt since the turn of the new year. Karl Robinson’s side face newly promoted Oxford United, fresh off the back of a win against rivals Swindon Town; The U’S will be looking to capitalise on MK’s leaky defence and extend their good start to life in League One.
Oxford manager Michel Appleton:
“There’s no doubt about it, we’re getting there. I’m starting to see things I want to see.
“I still don’t believe until we get to the 15-20-game mark, we’ll have a real rhythm about the team.
Charlton make up the three sides that were relegated from the second tier, and despite the ongoing problems surrounding the ownership of the club, things are starting to come together on the pitch. They face fellow London side AFC Wimbledon at The Valley, also new to this division having come up from League Two.
Coventry are one of the notable sides to have made a poor start to this season, the Sky Blues are yet to pick up three points and sit in 23rd spot, and will look for a change of fortunes when they host Oldham at the Ricoh Arena. Only one side sit below Coventry, which is Rochdale. Keith Hill’s side are also yet to win a game, and host Fleetwood Town at Spotland.
credit Richard Barrett-Small
- Bradford have made a promising start to the campaign, they play host to Bristol Rovers.
- Port Vale, one of the favourites to go down this season have made a surprisingly good start to the campaign under new boss Bruno Ribiero. They’re up against Gillingham at Vale Park.
- Sheffield United, after a poor start to the season are starting to pick up some form as of late, with three wins on the bounce, they play 6th place Peterborough.
- Shrewsbury host second place Scunthorpe at the Greenhous Meadow, Scunny will be delighted with their start to the season and will look to continue their impressive form with a victory in Shropshire.
- Southend sit 22nd in the current league table, they host promotion hopefuls Millwall, who lie in fifth spot.
- Swindon will look to bounce back from their derby disappointment against Oxford with a win at home to Bury, who picked up three points against Shrewsbury last week.
So that’s that for the preview of this coming weekends fixtures in the Sky Bet League One, each week I will focus more on different teams, and others will go in my ‘elsewhere’ column. I hope you enjoyed reading my preview, and I’ll be back next week.
How will your side fare this weekend? Who have you been most surprised with in League One so far this season? Let us know in the comments below!