It’s a trip to Cumbria this weekend for Wanderers as they take on Carlisle United in Sky Bet League One action.
Following a hard-fought win over Cheltenham Town during midweek courtesy of a first half strike from Victor Adeboyejo, Ian Evatt’s men will be eyeing back-to-back victories to keep them well in touch with the automatic promotion race.
Ian Evatt: "We're in a great position, a position of strength and everything is in our hands so we have to go out there and earn it now.
"Winning is the all important thing but the way we are as a club and as a team, we focus on our own processes and performance. We know we can play better than what we did on Tuesday and if we do that, we give ourselves a great chance of winning.
"It's never been an easy place to go. It's intense and aggressive and we have to go there with the right attitude first and foremost and then hopefully perform better than what we did on Tuesday.
"It's places like this where we have to go out and earn our position in the league and we'll be ready for it."
Carlisle United Manager Paul Simpson: "You just have to look at the league table to see they are a very consistent team. They’ve got good patterns in the way they play.
“They’re a side who are a very, very settled group of players. They have a few issues this weekend I believe, with a few injuries and I’m not sure if their player’s back from AFCON yet. But you don't hold a place up at the top of the table if you've got a poor group of players.
"We have an opportunity to get a double over them and we have to rise to that challenge. It doesn’t matter who we play, we have to start winning games. We need to win that first game to give us a chance to go on a run. I’m looking forward to this weekend because it’s a good test for us and we’ll see what we’re made of.”
Kyle Dempsey and Randell Williams unfortunately picked up knocks in midweek which will rule them out of this weekend’s fixture. Williams is estimated to miss 6-7 weeks of action.
George Thomason picked up his tenth yellow and therefore is suspended for Wanderers’ next two fixtures.
Will Forrester is still sidelined with a hamstring issue.
Carlos Mendes Gomes is now back from the African Cup of Nations
Carlisle will assess the fitness of Ben Barclay and Terry Ablade to see if they will be able to feature on Saturday.
Buoyed by a takeover at the end of 2023, United will be hoping that 2024 will bring League One safety as we head into the second half of the season.
A New Years day win over Port Vale got the Cumbrians off to a positive start but three consecutive defeats since then has stalled the Cumbrian’s efforts to climb out of the relegation zone.
Wanderers will know better than most the threats Paul Simpson’s side can pose after falling to a 3-1 defeat earlier in the season.
Carlisle currently find themselves in 23rd position in the division with a ten point gap to plug if they’re to escape the drop but with five new additions so far this window, United will be hoping they will provide the upward momentum they’ll need.
The Whites pushed themselves back into third position after a midweek win which leaves Ian Evatt’s side one point off 2nd and two points off top with games in hand.
And with five wins in their last six league games, Wanderers will be doing their upmost to continue that trend of form at the top end of the table.
Referee: Scott Oldham
Assistant Referees: Lewis Raper and Alex Gray
Fourth Official: Richard Aspinall
Supporters living outside of the UK can watch the game live via Wanderers TV with a match pass, which can be purchased HERE
Alternatively, UK supporters can listen to live full match commentary on Wanderers TV HERE.