By Steve Manning
Morecambe v The Dons
Venue: Mazuma Mobile Stadium (capacity: 6,476 – 2,247 seated)
Competition: Sky Bet League One – Matchday: 6 of 46
Morecambe FC – Position: 23rd – PD 5 W 0 D 3 L 2 GF GA GD -4 PTS 3
Top Goal scorer: Gnahoua – 2
Top Assists: Love, Hunter, Watts – 1 each.
Previous Result: won 1-0 vs Rotherham United away in the EFL Cup.
The Dons – Position: 22nd – PD 5 W 1 D 1 L 3 GF 3 GA 7 GD -4 PTS 4
Top Goal Scorer: Bradley Johnson – 2.
Top Assists: Darragh Burns & Dawson Devoy – 2.
Previous Result: won 2-0 away at Watford in the EFL Cup.
Head 2 Head: Morecambe wins 1, Drawn ,1 Dons wins 4 GF 12, GA 5.
Watford 0 Dons 2 – Review
League 1 Dons pulled off a fantastic 2-0 upset against high flying Championship outfit Watford, in Tuesday night’s Carabao Cup second round tie at Vicarage Road. Goals either side of half-time from substitute Matthew Dennis, and Irish winger Darragh Burns saw off the Hornets whose terrible run in the league cup continued, as the Dons booked their passage into round three of the tournament, for the first time in three years. It was Dennis who opened the scoring on the stroke of half-time, turning in Darragh Burns’ ball after some neat one-two’s between the pair. Darragh, himself got onto the scoresheet 10 minutes from the end of this game, rifling home from 25 yards out, after being set up by his compatriot Dawson Devoy. The goal drew instant comparisons from BBC 3CR with a certain Mr. Twine, well we’ll let you be the judge of that Dons fans.
Both sides went into this game having made several changes to the sides that started the weekend, Dons themselves went with seven changes but sticking with a 3-4-3 formation. Liam Manning’s fearless side put aside their poor start to the League One season, putting on a comfortable, and composed performance against a side going well early doors in the second tier. In contrast Watford were very lethargic for vast periods of the match, failing to cope with the frenetic pace of Manning’s young side. The only efforts the Hornets really had was within the last 15 minutes, and even then, they never troubled Jamie Cumming in the Dons goal. Watford have failed to progress against lower league opposition now in each of their last three attempts. It is a win that will give these boys a lift in morale, and confidence as they try to pull away from the foot of the third tier.
How could Morecambe line up? – I would expect Derek Adams to send his side out in a 3-5-2 formation. With his wingers, much like ours acting as wingbacks (when we play 3-4-3). Connor Ripley (son of Blackburn legend Stuart Ripley) is the first-choice keeper at the Mazuma Stadium. Much of their defensive play is initiated by the Shrimps custodian.
Possible Morecambe XI:
Farrend Rawson – Jacob Bedeau – Donald Love (c)
Ryan McLaughlin – Caleb Watts – Jensen Weir – Arthur Gnahoua – Anthony O’Connor
Cole Stockton – Jonathan Obika.
How could The Dons line up?
Hopefully the gaffer will stick with the fruitful 3-4-3 wingback formation now that he has seen its potential against the likes of Watford. In that case I’d stick with Devoy and Burns for sure.
Possible Dons XI:
Warren O’Hora – Jack Tucker – Dean Lewington (c)
Henry Lawrence – Dawson Devoy – Ethan Robson – Daniel Harvie
Darragh Burns – Will Grigg – Louie Barry.
One’s to watch
Cole Stockton – Morecambe: what is there to say about Cole “The Goal” Stockton that has not already been said? He is a natural striker, and Morecambe’s talisman. Could be quiet for most of the fixture but produce a moment of pure magic from out of nothing. A good capture for any team, and surely on his way to pastures new in this transfer window.
Darragh Burns – The Dons: After his performance against Watford, how can he not start against Morecambe? Showed everything he had against the Hornets, and then some. His link up plays with his fellow attackers on Tuesday night caused their Championship opponents numerous problems. If unleashed against the Shrimps could easily run riot in the Northwest today.
Morecambe 0 The Dons 3
Morecambe are yet to win in the league this season, and I cannot see that changing today. The Dons upturn in form should see them take the points comfortably and a 3-0 victory is my prediction.
Goal Scorers? Bradley Johnson, Will Grigg, and Matt Dennis for me.
Match Odds: Supplied by Oddschecker
Morecambe win: 11/5 Draw: 21/10 Dons win: 11/10
Dons to win 3-0: 18/1
To win to nil (any score): 13/5
If you are going today, then enjoy it, and as always, I wish you all a safe journey to, and from the game.
Next Up: Cheltenham Town (Papa John’s Trophy) August 30th. 7:45pm KO.
Until Next Time, SM.