Reds will be looking to stretch their unbeaten run to four games for the first time this season when they make their longest trip of the season for their final League 2 away game at Carlisle. Two wins and a draw have lifted Gabriele Cioffi's men clear of the relegation scrap and a victory at Brunton Park could lift us as high as 17th, depending on other results.
Carlisle have a lot to play for. With two games to go they are one of six teams looking to fill the final play-off slot. Easter Monday's defeat at Grimsby was a blow to their hopes of closing the two-point gap on Exeter but three points tomorrow could change the picture dramatically.
THE FORM GUIDE
Reds' improvement in form has lifted them to 13th in the form table but Carlisle are a tough nut to crack at home, where they have lost just twice in the last ten, winning six and drawing two. They have beaten Bury and champions Lincoln in their last two at Brunton Park.
Our record against Carlisle since we first met in the Football League is one win, four draws and six defeats. That victory came in our first ever league trip to Brunton Park in September 2012, when almost 200 Reds fan made the mammoth journey to Cumbria.
After a goalless first half, Nathan Byrne and Nicky Adams scored in the space of ten minutes to seal a memorable 2-0 win and send the travelling army home happy.
We then went on to draw three successive games with the Cumbrians – two 1-1 draws followed by a goalless stalemate at the Broadfield Stadium in April 2014. Carlisle then won three on the trot between November 2015 and October 2016.
Firstly, Charlie Wyke’s double and Jabo Ibehre’s goal left us down 3-1 with Rhys Murphy’s second half finish a consolation while in the return fixture in West Sussex Wyke was on target again late on to snatch a 1-0 victory.
The hosts went 3-0 up inside the first half in Cumbria in November 2016 with Mark Connolly scoring our consolation in a 3-1 defeat in second-half stoppage time.
Two years ago saw us involved in a thrilling 3-3 draw with United here at home. James Collins’ brace in the first 30 minutes – one of them a penalty – saw us race into a 2-0 lead before the visitors pegged us back to 2-2 through Jabo Ibehre and former Red Jamie Proctor.
Ibehre’s second turned the game on its head in the 59th minute, but Jimmy Smith’s stoppage-time equaliser spared Crawley’s blushes and earned us the point which sealed our League Two status for another season.
There was another high-octane encounter in the first part of last season, which saw three red cards. After a goalless first half Hallam Hope put Carlisle ahead just five minutes into the second period. Richie Bennett was sent off with 15 minutes to go and then, after a clash in stoppage time, Josh Yorwerth and Tom Parkes were both dismissed but Carlisle held on to claim a 1-0 victory.
The Reds came from two goals down to snatch a point in our last trip to Brunton Park in March 2018. Hope and Bennett were involved again as they both scored a goal ach either side of half time to put Carlisle 2-0 in front. Karlan Ahearne-Grant was the man to save the day for Town as his brace secured a valuable point and an impressive comeback on a snowy afternoon.
Earlier this season Dominic Poleon scored twice at The People's Pension Stadium but Carlisle ran out 3-2 winners.
Our only home win over Carlisle came in 2005 when we beat them 1-0 in the Conference.
Carlisle boss Steven Pressley wants his side to reproduce the form which saw them beat Lincoln and Bury in their last two home games so they can at least take their play-off battle to the final Saturday of the season. Pressley said: “In our last two home games we’ve beaten two sides at the top of the table, and performed very well in those games, and we have to go into Saturday’s game with a real intent and optimism.
“The least we must do is take it to the final game of the season. As this club has experienced in the past, anything can happen if you take it to the last game, even goalkeepers scoring goals! We have to at least take it to that point.”
Matty Willock is back in contention after he missed out on Monday against Notts County.
Carlisle are without midfielder Kelvin Etuhu (hamstring), Jamie Devitt and Danny Grainger.
THE MATCH OFFICIALS
Scott Oldham takes charge tomorrow. Find out more about his previous Crawley appointments here
HOW THEY BET*
Crawley win: 4/1
Carlisle win: 8/13
*Odds correct with EFL partners Sky Bet at time of writing. Please gamble responsibly.
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The game will be available for UK subscribers of iFollow from 2.55pm with live commentary from BBC Sussex & Surrey Sport's Gary Smith and Ken Blackmore.
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COME ON YOU REDS!