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Match Previews

Preview - A look ahead to Saturday's meeting with Sutton

27 January 2023

Match Previews

Preview - A look ahead to Saturday's meeting with Sutton

27 January 2023

After last weekend's trip to Grimsby was a casualty of the weather, Town are back in action tomorrow when they entertain Sutton United at The Envirovent Stadium.

Simon Weaver's side will hope to continue the momentum from the 1-1 home draw against high-flying Stevenage a fortnight ago and have been buoyed the arrival of new faces during the transfer window.

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Our opponents

This is United's second season as an EFL side, winning the National League the following season after Town themselves earned promotion.

Last season they missed out on a playoff spot on the final day by the narrowest of margins. They have found life a little trickier this time around, currently in 14th spot on 36 points which is five points back from the final playoff position.

On the road this season, Sutton have taken 10 points from 14 games and have registered one win in their last seven.

Earlier this season

The two sides met back in September at Gander Green Lane when Luke Armstrong cancelled out Harry Beautyman's early strike. However, Kylian Kouassi netted with twenty minutes remaining to earn a 2-1 win for the home side.

Since the two sides entered the Football League the U's have a 100% record from the four encounters so far.

Ones to watch

Will Randall leads the scoring charts having netted six times in 2022/23. Omar Bugiel and veteran defender Rob Milsom have found the target three times apiece.

Milsom is likely to be partnered in defence by Joe Kizzi and Louis Jean whilst Craig Eastmond has been a near ever present in midfield.

The club have brought in Lee Angol from Bradford City and David Ajiboye on loan from Peterborough during the transfer window. Ajiboye enjoyed a successful loan season at the club in 2021/22 before making a move to the League One side.

The man in charge

Matt Gray is in the dugout for United, being in the role since 2019. Forced to quit the game in his mid-twenties due to injury after stints at Barnet, Hayes and Havant & Waterlooville.

He then went into coaching at Eastleigh before taking positions at Aldershot and Crawley. Gray then joined Paul Doswell's coaching staff at Sutton before taking over the manager's position for the 2019/20 season, earning promotion and the manager of the year accolade a season later.

History

The club were long time members of the Athenian and Isthmian Leagues before earning promotion to the Conference in 1989. They fell back into the Isthmian League in 1991, where they remained until being elected to the newly-formed Conference South in 2004.

They suffered a further relegation in 2008 before bouncing back in 2010/11, enduring a couple of near missed in the playoffs before winning the title in 2015/16.

In the National League the club reached the playoffs in 2018, being defeated at the semi-final stage, before earning a historic promotion a season ago.

Before promotion to the Football League the club was most notable for its FA Cup exploits, having defeated recent-winners Coventry in 1988/89 in round three and then reached the fifth round in 2016/17, beating Leeds United before being knocked out by Arsenal.

Team news

Town's continue to have Stephen Dooley and Kyle Ferguson on the sidelines, but elsewhere have a clean bill of health and new signings Matty Foulds and Tom Eastman will come into contention.
 

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