Match Preview: Tranmere Rovers vs. Bolton Wanderers

Wanderers travel west to Birkenhead this weekend to take on Micky Mellon’s newly promoted Tranmere Rovers at Prenton Park.

The Whites will take on Rovers in a league fixture for the first time since January 2001. On our last trip to Prenton Park, Mike Whitlow’s goal earned Sam Allardyce’s side a narrow 1-0 victory in Division One.

Rovers have lost their first three games of the 2019/20 season. After a 3-2 home defeat to Rochdale on the opening day of the season, Rovers were beaten 2-0 by Portsmouth at Fratton Park before going out of the Carabao Cup at the first hurdle with a comprehensive defeat by Hull City.

Team News

Liam Edwards will miss this weekend’s trip to Prenton Park with an ankle injury which he picked up in the midweek Carabao Cup defeat at Rochdale.

Dennis Politic’s chances of being involved this weekend have been rated at 40% by Phil Parkinson with the 19 year-old winger nursing a problem with his hip flexor.

Head to Head

Wanderers and Tranmere Rovers have faced each other on 32 occasions, with us coming out on top in 13 of those contents.

The two teams have drawn on 11 occasions and Tranmere have 8 victories to their name in clashes between the two sides.

The last visit to Prenton Park as aforementioned, saw Mike Whitlow’s goal help Sam Allardyce’s side to earn the three points in Division One.

Since the 2000/01 season, the two sides have met four times in cup competitions. An FA Cup tie in 2004 saw Rovers come out on top 2-1 in a replay at the University of Bolton Stadium after a 1-1 draw at Prenton Park.

A Mark Davies goal saw Wanderers edge to a 1-0 victory at Prenton Park in a League Cup tie in August 2009 and Rovers won 4-2 on penalties in a League Cup tie on the same ground in August 2013 after a 1-1 draw with Jermaine Beckford on the scoresheet for Wanderers.

Match Coverage:

As usual, match updates will be provided by the club’s official twitter account (@OfficialBWFC). We will keep you up to date with the action to ensure you don’t miss a kick – delivering a match report shortly after the final whistle with post-match reaction from the manager, Phil Parkinson.

Live commentary will also be available by the iFollow BWFC channel (subscribe via the website), with the BBC Radio Manchester team providing the coverage.

Betting Odds

Tranmere Rovers are the favourites heading into this one. The home side are fancied to take all three points by Sky Bet and are priced at 2/7.

Wanderers are priced at 9/1 to register a first victory of the 2019/20 campaign and you can get the draw at 21/20.

Man in the Middle:

Charles Breakspear will be the referee for tomorrow’s Sky Bet League One clash with Tranmere Rovers.

The Surrey based referee has been involved in the professional game for the past seven years having overseen his first match back in August 2012, a bad tempered Conference affair between Ebbsfleet United and Braintree Town.

Breakspear’s last league fixture was on the opening day of the season – taking charge of Shrewsbury Town’s 1-0 home victory against Portsmouth in Sky Bet League One.

The last time he was in charge of a Wanderers clash was back in April 2017 when Phil Parkinson’s side snatched all three points late on at Southend United with Mark Beevers scoring the winning goal.

Paul Hobday and Paul Graham will act as his assistants, with Sam Mulhall the fourth official for Saturday afternoon’s fixture.

Key Men for the Rovers:

James Norwood departed Prenton Park in the summer to sign for fellow Sky Bet League One side, Ipswich Town having scored 93 goals for the club during four seasons after a move from Forest Green Rovers. He is certainly a big loss. 

The experienced former Wigan Athletic and Rochdale midfielder David Perkins has started the season playing in a midfield two in front of the back four and the 37 year-old’s experience could be vital for his team this season.

Connor Jennings is a threat for Rovers from the left-hand side of midfield and he opened his goal scoring account for the season with a goal in the opening day defeat to Rochdale at Prenton Park.


Tickets for tomorrow's Sky Bet League One clash at Tranmere Rovers have been on sale to Bolton supporters since 5pm on Wednesday 14 August.

Match tickets will be available to purchase online only, directly from Tranmere Rovers’ e-ticketing website HERE.

Wanderers supporters can access the stadium by either having their ticket scanned on the gate via their smartphone or supporters can print their tickets from home/work.

Visiting Bolton supporters will be situated in the Cowshed Stand. The club has been allocated a maximum of 2,000 tickets for the fixture and will be sold as unreserved seating. Those tickets have almost sold out and there will be no option for Pay on the Day at Prenton Park.

Disabled and carer tickets are not available online. Those supporters who require wheelchair bays or accessible seating are advised to contact Tranmere Rovers’ Ticket Office directly on 0151 609 3328 and will have their tickets sent to them via email.

Supporters requesting disability seating must be on the medium or higher rate of care on PIP or DLA.

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