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🔎 The Opposition: Cheltenham Town

Joe Glanville takes an in-depth look at the Robins

20 September 2018

Exeter City will be seeking a third league win on the trot after a hard-fought 2-1 victory against Mansfield at the One Call Stadium last time out.

The Grecians welcome Cheltenham Town to St James Park on Saturday. Though the Robins are languishing in 18th, they did win their last away game 3-1 against Northampton Town

Here’s the complete low-down on everything Cheltenham Town.

  • Founded: 1887
  • Stadium: Jonny-Rocks Stadium
  • Nickname: The Robins

Cheltenham were founded in 1887. They adopted the nickname ‘The Robins’ after adorning their now traditional red, white and black colours in the 1932 season, which has continued to this day.

The Gloucestershire sides’ most notable accomplishments to date has been two Conference titles in 1998/99 and just three years ago in 2015/16. They have also managed League Two play-off victories in 2001/02 and 2005/06.

The Manager

Michael Duff

The Former Northern Ireland defender enjoyed a stellar career in the Football League amassing up over 300 appearances for both Burnley and The Robins, before taking up the managerial reigns at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium just earlier this month.

It is Duff’s first managerial job after a two year stint managing Burnley’s academy team from 2016. After managing just one professional match so far – a draw – the 41 year-old will be aiming to keep his unbeaten record very much in tact against the Grecians.

The Ground

  • Name: Jonny-Rocks Stadium
  • Capacity: 7,200
  • Year opened: 1927
  • Address: Whaddon Road, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL52 5NA

The Jonny-Rocks Stadium was opened in 1927, as the then known Whaddon Road – the road in which it’s situated.

It has since undergone a series of name changes in the last decade such as the Abbey Business Stadium, The World of Smile Stadium, LCI Rail Stadium and as of this season, Jonny-Rocks.

The current capacity stands at 7,200, while their all-time record attendance is only marginally higher at 8,326 in an FA Cup fixture against Reading in the 1956/57 season.

One to watch

William Boyle might have only joined from Huddersfield at the beginning of last season, but the 23 year-old has took no time in establishing himself as one of the first names on the teamsheet.

Featuring in a free-scoring side last season with problems at the back, the uncompromising Scot has seen his stock rise as part of a watertight defence that has conceded just eight goals – the same as Exeter. The Grecians will have to be on top form to best of this promising centre back.

Recent form guide

The Robins have stuttered in the early stages of the season, as they sit in 18th place with two wins from eight.

Goals have been hard to come by for Cheltenham with only Grimsby and Morecambe scoring fewer goals. Their 0-0 home draw with Crewe perfectly emphasising this.

2017/18 Season in Review

  • Position: Sky Bet League Two, 17th place
  • Average attendance: 3,172
  • Top scorer: Mohamed Eisa, 23

Despite outscoring most of the division, including Saturday’s opponents, a leaky defence meant Cheltenham were unable to sustain any form of promotion push.

In fact, staving off relegation was part of The Robins remit as they finished 17th on 51 points and five off of relegated Barnet in 23rd.

Recent meetings

Exeter City 2-1 Cheltenham Town (2/4/18)

Jordan Storey’s 81st minute winner ensured Exeter City completed the league double over Cheltenham and pressed home their promotion hopes. The Robins on the other hand, continued their perilous battle against relegation.

Cheltenham Town 3-4 Exeter City (26/8/17)

Paul Tisdale’s men battled back from Kevin Dawson’s double within the first 12 minutes of the match, to level the score at half-time thanks to Jordan Moore-Taylor and Reuben Reid. The striker then got his brace from the spot, as Jamie Grimes saw red. Jake Taylor added a fourth for Exeter, before Dan Holman’s 90th minute goal proved no more than a consolation.

Head-to-head

  • Exeter City wins: 6
  • Draws: 1
  • Cheltenham Town wins: 9

Ticket News

Advanced-priced tickets are available for the Thatchers' Big Bank and can be purchased by clicking here.

The IP Office Main Stand has sold out for the match.

Up next at St James Park

Following the visit of Cheltenham Town on Saturday, Stevenage arrive at St James Park on October 2. Tickets are available by clicking here.


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