Carlisle return to Edgeley Park tomorrow for the first time since 2006.
It was 6th May to be exact, and of course it was the memorable day that both teams sealed truly opposite Football League fates for the next season.
Carlisle just needed a point to win the League Two trophy, while County needed a point and for Oxford to lose or draw to escape relegation to the Conference.
Of course, we all know what happened in what turned out to be a very emotional, highly charged day for both teams.
County did play Carlisle last season though, defeating the Cumbrians 3-0 at Brunton Park in the Johnstones Pain Trophy. Anthony Elding, Matty McNeil and Adam Proudlock got the goals.
County reached the semi finals before an agonising defeat to Grimsby.
Striker Craig Davies will most probably make his debut after signing with the Hatters today, yet assistant manager Pater Ward thinks Irishman Stevie Gleeson will be key to unlocking Carlisle’s leaky defence tomorrow.
‘When you’re so talented like Stephen you have to get him on the ball.’
‘Now that we’ve found the right balance for him he’s popping up in good positions.’
‘He’s also doing very well defensively for us.’
‘His contribution in the last three games has been excellent and he deserved his man-of-the-match against Tranmere.’
Peter Ward: ‘They’ve (Carlisle) had a few indifferent results, but I expect them to come down here and try to keep a clean sheet.’
‘It will be another difficult game for us and the fans are going to have to be patient and play their part.’
‘You ask about some people and you get ridiculous prices quoted at you and ridiculous wages that are out of our price range.
‘To improve on these players we’re going to have to get in a decent player because we’ve got some good ones here.
‘But we’ll keep searching, perhaps someone will be kind to us.’
County signed Oldham striker Craig Davies later in the day.
County Team News:
Craig Davies, signed on loan today from Oldham Athletic, will most likely be starting up front for the Hatters.
Matty McNeil has returned to training following the assault McNeil endured at the hands of Colchester defender Paul Reid two weeks ago.
Club skipper Michael Raynes has also recovered from a groin strain, but with the return of McNeil, County now have three out and out strikers fit to play for the first time this season.
Player to watch: Craig Davies
Oldham’s top scorer last season, but this season Davies has been a little off the boil and has fired blanks in the ten games he has played this season.
Reports are also suggesting that the reason Davies signed for County was due to a behind-the-scenes fall out at Boundary Park.
Davies will surely be on fire for his Hatters debut in front of the home crowd.
Carlisle Team News:
For Carlisle, Paul Thirwell, Jennison Myrie-Williams and Marc Bridge-Wilkinson may be available for selection after recovering from injury. Michael Bridges, Chris Lumsdon and Peter Murphy are still out.
Player to watch: Marc Bridge-Wilkinson
Bridge-Wilkinson failed to make an impact at Edgeley Park under Chris Turner and Sammy McIlroy, and made jsut 22 poor appearances for the Hatters before being shipped off to Bradford. Bridge-Wilkinson has impressed at most of the other clubs he has played for, yet he was something of a myth at County.
He will be hoping to prove the County fans wrong about him tomorrow.
County – 10/11
Draw – 9/4
Carlisle – 12/5
2-2. County are not in brilliant home form and Carlisle need to scrape something, anything from this game to ease the pressure.
Sat 15 15:00 Away Millwall FL1