Opposition: Exeter City
Managed by: Matt Taylor
Competition: Sky Bet League Two Match Thirteen
Date: Tuesday, October 19, 7:45pm
Tickets for this fixture will be priced as follows:
Tickets can be purchased on the day until kick-off at The People’s Pension Stadium.
Redz Bar will open its doors at 5pm and reception will open at 5:30pm for those in Hospitality.
Today’s match sponsor is Complete Turf Care.
Prior to this weekend, just a point separates Exeter City and Crawley Town in League Two with the Grecians proving difficult to beat, but also struggling for wins having picked up strangely impressive seven draws from their opening 11 league games. After agonisingly missing out on the play-offs on the last day of last season and losing the play-off final the year before, the Devon-based side will be full of ambition once again this season as they look to make the crucial leap into League One. The man who has led them to both close calls is Matt Taylor who took the job as manager in July 2018. He remains a popular figure at St James Park – an accolade boosted by his 150+ appearances for the Grecians as a player – and is edging towards his 200th game as their manager. Exeter were faced with a long and disappointing journey home in February when they last travelled to the People’s Pension Stadium, watching their side get reduced to ten men and go on to lose 2-0 as Tom Nichols and Ashley Nadesan struck home on a chilly Saturday afternoon.
ONES TO WATCH
Cameron Dawson joined the Grecians last summer on loan from Sheffield Wednesday, the club he has been with since he was 18. He came through Sheffield United’s youth academy before switching sides in the steel city in 2012 and has since been almost constantly on loan. These loans have included visits to Plymouth Argyle, Wycombe Wanderers, Alfreton Town, Chesterfield FC and, of course, Exeter City. When he hasn’t been on loan, Dawson has made 76 appearances for Wednesday – 65 in the Championship – where the 6’4 Englishman has kept 18 clean sheets.
Position: Centre forward
Matt Jay captains the Grecians and has been on their books as a pro since 2013, since he graduated from their academy. He made his first-team debut in the Football League Trophy against Wycombe Wanderers in the same year and has since become known for his great technical ability and quick feet. A home-grown talent, Jay is now approaching his 150th appearance for Exeter City and is their current top goal scorer for this season with five goals in 12 games. He won the club’s golden boot award – among many others – at the 2020/21 end of season awards, with his 20 goals in 48 games. While developing his talents, he went out on loan to Weston Super Mare, Hayes and Yeading and Truro City in 2014, 2015 and 2016 respectively before becoming a permanent fixture at St James Park.
Position: Centre forward
Sam Nombe signed a three-year deal with Exeter City last summer after transferring to Devon from his boyhood club MK Dons. He exhibited his pace and power during pre-season, traits learnt in MK Dons’ academy and perfected across steps two, three, four and five of English football. He featured in the Championship last season for Luton Town, making 11 substitute appearances but failing to score and only playing more than one half of football once. He had more success as a professional with MK Dons, netting five times for them across League One, the EFL Trophy and the Carabao Cup. Aside from these two experiences, he has spent time playing in non-league with Oxford City and Maidenhead United but seems to have found his level with the Grecians, having netted four times in nine games so far this campaign.
HEAD TO HEAD
Since 2015, the sides have met on twelve occasions, with Crawley victorious on four of these meetings. Exeter have won four of these ties with yet another four ending in score draws.
Both teams have scored in seven of our last nine meetings with the Devon side. Our last win against Exeter at home came in February of last season, when a side that included the likes of Davide Rodari, Jordan Maguire-Drew and Joe McNerney turned it on to control the game and keep an impressive clean sheet against a side in impressive goal-scoring form, winning 2-0. The scorers that day were forwards Tom Nichols and Ashley Nadesan. Nichols struck from the spot after Nick Tsaroulla was brought down by Jake Caprice, and the forward also claimed an assist when he found Nadesan in the box with precision as the lead was doubled.
HOW THEY BET*
Crawley Town 9/5
Exeter City 7/5
*Odds correct with EFL partners Sky Bet at the time of writing. Please gamble responsibly.