Monday, 16 October 2017

That Preview Thing: Forest Green Rovers

You'd think facing Accrington Stanley would be the most painful fixture of the season, but no, Forest Green Rovers won the National League Play Off Final against Tranmere Rovers back in May. Now the time has come where we have to see the 32, 609 seater Ricoh Arena, the 18th biggest club stadium in England and Wales, host them. To put that into perspective, the entire population of the town they're in, Nailsworth, could fit into it 4.2 times. The city of Coventry is almost 70 times larger, but enough of the facts and figures, because in reality it doesn't make any sort of difference.



Last Time Out

Accrington Stanley 1-0 Coventry City
McConille (15')
Saturday 14th October 2017
Sky Bet League Two


A painful 1-0 loss at Accrington Stanley in the worst performance of the season, the only other one that gets close is Yeovil. We really can't hack going away from the Ricoh can we? Which makes it all the more lucky that we've got two home fixtures now. Accrington was extremely poor though, a massive hole left by Liam Kelly being injured wasn't filled by Ben Stevenson and I felt like tearing my eyes out when Rod McDonald hoofed the ball at Biamou for the fourteenth time. That's not even an exaggeration, it was that bad.

Last Meeting

It doesn't take a genius to realise that we have never faced Forest Green Rovers in a competitive fixture, I also couldn't find any record of a friendly ever taking place. However there is one thing that connects the two clubs and that is our left back Chris Stokes, so as a bit of a page filler where a short summary would be, here is a picture of the hero himself.


Potential Starting XI:

Burge

Grimmer
Willis
McDonald
Stokes

Doyle
Kelly

Jones
Biamou
Vincenti

Nazon

Liam Kelly was at Accrington on Saturday and was walking about looking fine, so I imagine it was just a knock. Having heard nothing bad you'd think he would be able to jump straight back into the side. Another change I would make would be removing Devon Kelly-Evans from the side in favour of perhaps Peter Vincenti. Ryan Haynes still isn't quite ready for a first team return but the twin does likely need dropping as he's been bullied off the ball a considerable amount lately, something which you can't see being the same for Pete.

Arguably it may be time to drop Biamou as he has yet to score but he seems very much like a confidence player, one he does bag one or two, he won't be able to stop. Personally I'd put in Kwame Thomas but that is looking increasingly less likely given his recent loan move and persistent starts in the u23s. Even Beavon might rear his head in for a start tomorrow night, but is he what you want against a side who are almost certainly going to park the bus and play for a point?

The Opposition

Contrary to what the chairman said at the start of the season, it hasn't been easy for the newest members of the Football League to walk League Two as they sit down in 23rd with just the one win to their name. They shouldn't be taken lightly however, they came away with a point from table topping Notts County not long ago and it really could have been three if it weren't for Rob Milsom's 96th minute equaliser.

Basically, no matter how bad they may be, we still need to try as hard as we can. We could really do with battering a side 3 or 4-0 with goals coming from all over the pitch rather than just The Duck or Jodi Jones. It can't be stressed enough how crucial it is for us to come away with six points from Forest Green and Colchester on Saturday.

Betting Preview

Coventry - 1/2
Draw - 16/5
Forest Green - 6/1

Forest Green are likely coming to park the bus and Mark Robins has said the team have prepared for this. I'm going to give two recommendations, one is both teams to not score at 4/5. The second is a lot more optimistic and assume we can break down their paper defence, Coventry to win to nil at 11/8. I suggested the same about Accrington but put it this way, we've won all but one home game this season and have only conceded one goal, in theory we should be fine.

Prediction

If we get an early goal then we could batter them, but I'm not sure whether we have it in us. If we did this then the visitors would be forced to come out of their shells, leaving us to attack with more freedom. instead though if we don't it could be a really hard contest and with low confidence after the weekends defeat, a struggle to break them down. I could see it fizzling out as a 0-0 with us having over 20 shots but instead I'm going to go with a modest City win.

Coventry City 2-0 Forest Green Rovers

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