We’ve reached the final third of the season and although there are still at least 14 games left to go, Bristol City might not have a better chance than this weekend to put some serious daylight between them and the rest of the promotion contenders. City are the only team in the top six to have a home game tomorrow (Rochdale haven’t visited Ashton Gate since March 1984) and with three of their nearest rivals travelling to teams that are fighting for their lives at the bottom of the table then you’d be forgiven for thinking we might see a few unexpected results.
MK Dons travel to Coventry for only the sixth league game between the clubs. The Dons can’t overtake the leaders regardless of how well they perform, but with Steven Pressley no longer in charge of the Sky Blues, this looks like it could be a huge trap for Milton Keynes. Although Coventry have never beaten tomorrow’s visitors at home and haven’t beaten anyone at the Ricoh Arena since October (the 3-2 win over Peterborough is the only time they’ve scored more than two goals at home so far this season) , the Sky Blues have only lost three of their last ten home games. Coventry’s big problem is failing to hold on to leads: since August they’ve taken the lead in three games they’ve eventually drawn.
After recent defeats at Bradford and Gillingham, MK won at Colchester in the middle of the month to record their first away win since they thumped Crewe 5-0. However, Karl Robinson’s side has not won consecutive games on the road since the start of the season, they’ve only won four of their last ten aways and both Walsall and Notts County have conceded fewer goals on their travels so far in 2014/15.
Sheffield United may have the toughest test at Crawley. The Red Devils have only lost twice at the Checkatrade.com Stadium since the end of November, but although United have won both of their previous encounters in West Sussex, they’ve not won more than three consecutive away games in League One for nearly two years.
The most pressure will be on Swindon. They don’t necessarily have to win at Crewe to remain third, but if Preston win at Oldham and Swindon only draw, the Lillywhites go third and will still have a game in hand. The good news for Swindon fans is that they haven’t lost four aways in a row since the end of 2012/13; the bad news is that they’ve not won at Gresty Road since April 2003 and Crewe have only lost twice at home since October.
Before I go, there was an unexpected managerial change earlier this week. Lee Johnson swapped Oldham for Barnsley after just under two years in charge at Boundary Park. This seems like a sideways move, but I suppose that the Tykes would prefer to be slightly higher up the table and in that case, it’s the right move.
I’ll be back before next Tuesday’s games.