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Oct 9, 2021 at 3pm UK
Bristol RoversBristol Rovers
CarlisleCarlisle United
Evans (35'), Nicholson (86'), Saunders (90+4')
Harries (23'), Saunders (76'), Thomas (88'), Whelan (90')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Feeney (16'), Devine (26'), Alessandra (38'), Armer (60'), Guy (61'), Mellish (74')

Preview: Bristol Rovers vs. Carlisle United - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Bristol Rovers vs. Carlisle United - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's League Two clash between Bristol Rovers and Carlisle United, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Bristol Rovers will welcome Carlisle United to the Memorial Stadium on Saturday in League Two and both sides will enter the fixture level on 10 points.

The hosts currently sit in 10th position, while Carlisle are one place higher than their opponents due to a slightly better goal difference.

Match preview

After being relegated from League One last season, Bristol Rovers have struggled to adapt to life in the fourth tier of English football and their poor start has seen questions asked about Joey Barton's position as manager.

Their first six games of the season yielded seven points, which included wins over Oldham Athletic and Crawley Town.

However, after a steady start, they enter Saturday's fixture on the back of a poor run of results that has seen The Gas lose three of their last four games.

Last weekend's encounter with Swindon Town saw Bristol Rovers face their old manager Ben Garner and their old boss guided his new side to a 3-1 victory.

If The Gas are to start picking up victories, then their defence needs to improve due to the fact that Barton's men have conceded 17 goals in the league this term - no other team has conceded more and Scunthorpe United are the only side to concede the same number.

Although Carlisle sit three points away from the relegation zone, their season got off to a promising start and their first six league fixtures resulted in only one defeat.

However, fortunes have since changed and Chris Beech's side are on a four-game winless run in League Two, which has resulted in them dropping down the table.

In their last outing against Forest Green Rovers, first-half goals from Jamille Matt and Nicky Cadden were enough to condemn Carlisle to a 2-0 defeat.

Like Saturday's opponents, The Cumbrians have also struggled defensively and have shipped in 15 league goals so far this term, which is an issue Chris Beech will need to resolve soon if his side are to avoid being drawn into a relegation battle.

Carlisle have only won once away from home in the league this season and that came against Swindon Town back in August, so a second away victory this weekend will do wonders for a team struggling for confidence.

Bristol Rovers League Two form:
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L

Bristol Rovers form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L

Carlisle United League Two form:
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • L

Carlisle United form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • L

Team News

Bristol Rovers will be without Leon Clarke, who is a long-term absentee for The Gas.

Sam Nicholson is also out for the hosts, although he is nearing a return from a shin injury.

Barton could bring Nick Anderton into the back three to replace Alfie Kilgour, who is suspended after being sent off last weekend against Swindon.

Carlisle will have to make a change in goal due to the fact Magnus Norman picked up an injury in last weekend's game against Forest Green, which means Lukas Jensen will make his first league appearance of the season.

Tristan Abrahams made a return from a foot injury last Saturday when he made an appearance as a second-half substitute and he is likely to come into the starting lineup for this weekend.

Beech will have Manasse Mampala available after the forward missed the last league game due to suspension and Mampala will be on the bench for the Bristol Rovers clash.

Bristol Rovers possible starting lineup:
Belshaw; Taylor, Harries, Anderton; Anderson, Whelan, Finley, Brown; Saunders, Evans, Pitman

Carlisle United possible starting lineup:
Jensen; Riley, Dinzeyi, Feeney, Armer; Whelan, Guy, Mellish; Toure, Dickenson, Abrahams

We say: Bristol Rovers 2-1 Carlisle United

There is likely to be goals in this contest with the two sides struggling defensively and both teams will be looking to move away from the relegation zone.

In five of the last six meetings between Bristol Rovers and Carlisle, the home side has emerged victorious and we think that trend will continue on Saturday with The Gas just squeezing past their opponents.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data

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League Two Table
1Forest Green RoversForest Green1594227131431
2Port Vale1584327151228
3Northampton TownNorthampton158342011927
4Exeter CityExeter1568125151026
5Swindon TownSwindon157532215726
6Leyton Orient1558225121323
7Harrogate TownHarrogate156542720723
8Newport CountyNewport156542518723
9Sutton UnitedSutton157262318523
10Hartlepool UnitedHartlepool157261720-323
11Tranmere RoversTranmere156451110122
12Bradford CityBradford155642118321
16Bristol Rovers155371723-618
17Colchester UnitedColchester154561219-717
18Crawley TownCrawley155281725-817
19Salford City154471617-116
20Mansfield TownMansfield153571420-614
22Oldham AthleticOldham153391122-1112
23Carlisle UnitedCarlisle152671124-1312
24Scunthorpe UnitedScunthorpe152581129-1811
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20Norwich CityNorwich11128526-215
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