nPower League 1
Saturday 18th August 2012
The Lamex Stadium, Stevenage
Kick Off: 3pm
Weather Forecast: Sunny, 32°c
Referee: F Graham (Essex)
After seeing off AFC Wimbledon 3-1 in the midweek Capital One Cup game and earning a second round tie against Premier League new boys Southampton, Stevenage turn their attention to their opening nPower League 1 fixture on Saturday with a home match against Carlisle United.
The Cumbrians were right up there in the chase for the playoffs until the last few weeks of last season, so this game will be a good early test for both sides and Gary Smith will want his men to get off to the best possible start by winning all three points.
Last time we met…
Stevenage secured a massive three points with a narrow 1-0 win against their fellow playoff hopefuls back in April. Craig Reid fired over from 10 yards and Carlisle ‘keeper Adam Collin did well to save a Jamaal Lascelles header before Chris Day then kept out a headed effort from Andy Welsh with his legs. Sub John Mousinho made the vital breakthrough with 15 minutes remaining as he ran onto a Stacy Long pass before smashing in off the bar.
Boro: Day; Lascelles, Ashton, Roberts, Laird; Wilson, Long, Bostwick, Freeman (Mousinho); Reid (Slew), Agyemang (Myrie-Williams)
Subs not used: Julian, Shroot
Stevenage are unlikely to make any changes to the team which started against AFC Wimbledon. Bondz N’Gala should partner Mark Roberts in defence as Jon Ashton continues his comeback from injury whilst Matt Ball could also make the bench after playing for the Northern Ireland U21s in midweek.
Carlisle could welcome back Danny Cadamarteri after the forward resumed training earlier this week following injury whilst Jon-Paul McGovern should also get another run-out after playing 80 minutes against Accrington last weekend. Jack Lynch (foot), Paddy Madden (leg) and Rory Loy (leg) are out.
The Carlisle Scout Report
Carlisle started the season off with a 1-0 win over Accrington Stanley in the Capital One Cup last Saturday and will look to bring that form into this league opener. Prior to that the Cumbrians had enjoyed a successful pre-season, with wins over Kendal (3-0), Workington (5-0), Barrow (4-0), Durham City (3-0) and St Mirren (1-0) before successive 2-1 defeats to Middlesbrough and Morecambe.
Whilst their home form was good last season with 12 wins and seven draws, their away form probably cost them their chance of making it into the playoffs, winning just six of their 23 league games on the road and ending up with a goal difference of -12 on their travels.
Possible Carlisle line-up for Saturday (4-4-2 formation)
Adam Collin; Brad Potts, Danny Livesey, Mike Edwards, Allesio Bugno; Liam Noble, James Berrett, Chris Chantler, Jon-Paul McGovern; Lee Miller, Matty Robson
Subs from: Paul Thirlwell, David Symington, Mark Beck, Frank Simek, Peter Murphy, Andrew Welsh, Mark Gillespie, Danny Cadamarteri
With livewire striker Francois Zoko departing for pastures new, much of the goalscoring responsibility at Carlisle is sure to fall on the shoulders of Lee Miller. The 29 year old, who has won three Scotland caps since making his international debut in 2006, struck 15 goals in his debut season at Brunton Park after arriving from Middlesbrough and will be hoping to be in equally impressive form during this new campaign.
• New Carlisle signing Alessio Bugno is the son of twice world cycling champion and Tour de France runner-up Gianni Bugno. The 22-year old Italian cycled and played football until the age of 12 before deciding to pursue his career in football.
• This is the first time Carlisle have played away on the opening day of the season since the 2008/09 season, when they travelled to Bristol Rovers and won 3-2.
• Stevenage haven’t won on the opening day of the season since August 2005 when they beat Altrincham 3-0, courtesy of goals from Elding, Stamp and Maamria. Of the six games since, Boro have drawn three and lost three, scoring five whilst conceding 12.
• Carlisle have suffered defeats on both previous occasions they have visited The Lamex Stadium: 2-1 in March 2005 and 1-0 in April 2012.
PREVIEW BY DAVE TOYN