It’s a case of almost – but not quite – ‘as you were’ after Saturday’s games: there’s a nine point gap between the top three teams. Wolves and Leyton Orient both won, but a single goal from Macauley Bonne of Colchester (on his eighteenth birthday too – he may be one to watch) was enough to hand Peterborough their second defeat this season. Preston are six points behind Posh after winning 1-0 at Notts County and Brentford moved into the playoff places after a single goal victory over Shrewsbury.
The bottom half of table is far closer: only six points separate the bottom seven clubs and with the bottom two having games in hand, it could get even closer. Notts County can climb off the table tomorrow if they win their spare game against Oldham; they’ll overtake Bristol City finally recorded their first win of the season. Despite going behind at Carlisle, a hattrick from Jay Emmanuel-Thomas saw off the Cumbrians for City’s first away win since before last Christmas.
The FA Cup draw was made yesterday and there are some interesting looking ties. Rotherham v Bradford looks like the pick of the all League 1 games: Coventry’s trip to AFC Wimbledon pits two sides who won the FA Cup in consecutive seasons during the late 1980s whilst I’m quite happy to admit that I’d never heard of Port Vale’s potential opponents Shortwood United – they’re just down the road from Forest Green Rovers if that’s any help.
Here’s a run down of the first round ties, all of which are scheduled to be played on 9th/10th November:
All League 1
Colchester United v Sheffield United
Oldham v Wolves
Rotherham United v Bradford City
Walsall v Shrewsbury
League 1 v League 2
Accrington v Tranmere Rovers
AFC Wimbledon v Coventry City
Bristol City v Dagenham & Redbridge
Hartlepool v Notts County
Peterborough United v Exeter City
Stevenage v Portsmouth – that just looks weird to me.
League 1 v Non-League
Boreham Wood v Carlisle United
Brentford v Staines Town or Poole Town
Gillingham v Brackley or Barrow
MK Dons v FC Halifax Town
Hednesford v Crawley
Leyton Orient v Southport
Macclesfield v Swindon
Preston v Barnet
Shortwood United or Aldershot v Port Vale
Wycombe Wanderers v Crewe Alexandra
I’ll be back on Friday with a look at the weekend’s games.