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Match preview: Cheltenham v Exeter City

8 December 2016

Ryan Harley and Jordan Tillson in contention for return against Cheltenham

Ryan Harley and Jordan Tillson are both back into contention for a starting place against Cheltenham Town on Saturday, but up to five central defenders could be ruled out of the game through injury.

Ryan has not played for City since coming off injured in the 2-0 loss to Plymouth Argyle on September 17, while Jordan Tillson has been out since fracturing his ankle in a 1-0 defeat to Portsmouth on August 27.

Jordan, who can play at centre-back or in central midfield, stands a good chance of being named in the starting XI for the trip to Whaddon Road as manager Paul Tisdale looks to cope with a continuing injury crisis at the back.

Troy Archibald-Henville is a long-term absentee, while Pierce Sweeney (ankle) and Luke Croll (concussion) will also be missing. 


Added to that Ethan Ampadu picked up an injury in youth team game last Saturday and remains a serious doubt for the game, while Tis has his fingers crossed that Jordan Moore-Taylor will be okay for despite him picking up a knock in training.  

“That is five centre-backs that could be out, so it is not helping much,” said Tis. “Yes, we have got one or two players back. Ryan Harley is back into the picture along with Jordan Tillson and we have got a relatively quiet month. 

“There is 10 days between the Mansfield game up to the Boxing Day game so hopefully we can push to have players back with us other the next two or three weeks.”

City have a good recent record against Cheltenham, having done the double over the Robins in the season they were relegated from the Football League in 2014/15. 

However, Cheltenham have bounced back strongly from that setback – gaining promotion comfortably from the National League last term – and Tis is not reading too much into the recent record between the two teams.

“I don’t think there is a lot of history between the two clubs,” he said. “I think that needs to be extended over a greater period before we start talking in those times. We did win games against them recently but it is a new season, a new set of players and a new situation. There will not be too many similarities between Saturday and the last time we played them a couple of seasons ago.”


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