The Reds host Carlisle United this Saturday at The Peoples' Pension Stadium having been defeated 2-1 on the road at Crewe in midweek. Town were unlucky to concede a 90th minute goal which saw them travel back to Sussex empty handed.
The Reds sit six points above Saturday’s visitors but have only defeated them once in their previous 13 meetings.
The last time the Reds faced Carlisle was the opening fixture of the 2019/2020 season as they fell to a 2-1 loss. Bez Lubala scored on his competitive debut to equalise after Harry McKirdy put the hosts one up in six minutes. Steven Scougall’s 32nd minute strike was enough to give Carlisle all three points.
Town come into the fixture having lost their first game in four on Tuesday night as they fell to second placed Crewe. It was the hosts that dominated the majority of the fixture but the Reds were resilient to not let them pass and had a solid first half defensively. Glenn Morris had another heroic performance making a number of world class saves to stop Crewe taking the lead. In the second half Crawley looked to be shutting Crewe out and looked more and more likely to walk away with a point at least but a dubious penalty decision in the 70th minute turned the game on its head. Jamie Sendles-White brought down Callum Ainley in the view of the referee although to many in the crowd it appeared Ainley was already going to ground before the contact. Regardless Chris Porter stepped up and dispatched the penalty. Many expected the hosts to walk away with all three points after taking the lead but Town fought back and won a penalty of their own in the 82nd. Chris Porter turned from hero to zero as he fouled Jordan Tunnicliffe in the area. On his return from injury Nathan Ferguson produced the perfect penalty smashing the top left corner to look to give Crawley a hard earned point. Porter was out to redeem himself and he did just that in the 89th minute. A sweeping ball in by Perry Ng was met at the far post by Porter to give the hosts a dramatic victory which sees them keep the pressure on league leaders Swindon. That result sees Town drop to 14th in the table.
Carlisle had started to string some decent results together before Tuesday night as they hadn’t lost since the 15th of January when they exited the FA Cup at the hands of championship side Cardiff City. However Tuesday night that came to an end as they were defeated at home by promotion hopefuls Cheltenham Town. Reuben Reid’s first half goal was enough to see Carlisle lose for the first time in five games meaning they stay 20th in League 2.
Bez Lubala and Nathan Ferguson both returned to training this week and look to be in contention for John Yems' match day squad. Lewis Young and Tom Dallison remain side-lined with an injury
Our record against Carlisle since we first met in the Football League is one win, five draws and seven defeats. That victory came in our first ever league trip to Brunton Park in September 2012, when almost 200 Reds fans 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.
Our most recent meeting with the Cumbrians came on the opening day of the season as they defeated the Reds 2-1 at Brunton Park. Bez Lubala scored his first goal for the club but it wasn’t enough to see Crawley claim their second win over the blues.
David Rock (Referee)
Daniel Leach & Nick Greenhalgh (Linesmen)
Rob Smith (Fourth Official)
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A home win is marked as 11/10 a draw 12/5 and an away win 21/10
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