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Match Previews

FOREST GREEN PREVIEW

23 August 2013

All you need to know ahead of Saturday's game

WHERE? Rovers are affectionately known as the ‘little club on the hill’, given their location at the top of a hill in the sedate surroundings of the quaint, small Gloucestershire town of Nailsworth. 

EXCUSE ME? You’re right to ask a second time. Nailsworth only has a population of 6,600. It’s a few miles south of Stroud, but don’t be put off though, it’s a picture-postcard location in the Coltswolds. You never know, you might score some brownie points with a loved one by doubling it up with a romantic weekend.

HOW TO GET THERE. You can take the scenic route and go via Aylesbury and Oxford and across to Cirencester or go M1 south, M25 and M4 coming off the M4 at Swindon and taking the A419. Or, punch in GL6 0ET and get the sat-nav to do it for you. If you still can’t manage that, give the Bobbers a call on 01234 856542 and book a place on the coach. It’s £20 for adults and £17 concessions, with the coach leaving at 10am.

FORM. The title favourites for promotion to the Football League signalled their intent for the title with a 8-0 thumping of Hyde at the New Lawn on the opening day of the season. Marcus Kelly led the way in the scoring stakes with a hat-trick on his debut Rovers failed to build on that opening day victory, however, and needed a Jared Hodgkiss equaliser 12 minutes from time to salvage a point at Nuneaton in their second game before losing 2-1 at Lincoln last Saturday.

GREEN ARMY. FGR are the greenest club in the country. And it’s not just their electric lime green shirts. They're powered by chairman Dale Vince OBE who has made his way in business in green energy. 

MEATING’S CHEATING. Vince’s green revolution goes further than generating the club’s electricity from solar panels...he’s also banned red meat at the ground. So forget ordering a double cheeseburger and make sure you opt for the halloumi and falafel.

CHANGING ENDS. Town fans making the trip west will watch the game at the New Lawn from a different vantage point. Rovers have decided to move away supporters to the covered terrace behind one of the goals, instead of allocating them seats behind the other. Should the demand be enough, the Hatters support will also be housed in the uncovered terrace by the side of the pitch. 

TICKETS. It’s an all-ticket affair. You can either buy from the ticket office, or, via Forest Green’s website, book the ticket and print it off yourself. Click here for more details.

REMEMBER ME? Rovers have a number of familiar faces in their squad this season. Three former Town men currently ply their trade at the New Lawn. Ed Asafu-Adjaye signed for the club last summer, but he has now been joined by George Pilkington and Matthew Barnes-Homer in the Coltswolds. Former captain Pilkington joined on loan from Mansfield Town whilst Barnes-Homer – who scored 23 goals for the Town – penned a two-year deal this summer.

PREVIOUS MEETINGS. Saturday’s meeting will the fifth time the two sides have met each other at the New Lawn. The Hatters have enjoyed a fine record in this part of the world in the past four campaigns, winning three and losing one of the four matches. A last-minute penalty from Scott Rendell secured the Town a 2-1 win last October.

WANNA BET? The Town are best-priced 11/5 to take all three points back to Bedfordshire whilst Rovers are the 13/10 favourites. If you fancy Luke Guttridge to score the first goal, the midfielder is 18/1.

TOWN TEAM NEWS. The Hatters will be without defenders Anthony Charles (shoulder) and Danny Fitzsimons (knee), midfielders Solomon Taiwo (hamstring) and Alex Lawless (groin) and striker Alex Wall (virus) for the trip to the Coltswolds. 

VIEWPOINT 1. FGR boss Dave Hockaday: "It's always a big game against Luton, and this year because the bookies have us as joint favourites it will be a massive encounter. We respect every team we play but we don’t fear anybody. Yes Luton have got some great individual players that maybe other sides don't have, but we will take them on as a team, as a tight group."

VIEWPOINT 2. Town boss John Still: "I’m sure their manager is asking him the same questions about Luton. Will it be the toughest test we have faced so far? No, the toughest was the first home game of the season."

LIVE & DIRECT. We’ll have all the news as it happens from the New Lawn. Pre-match build-up, team news, live text and audio commentary, a report, reaction, photographs and interviews. Remember to keep it lutontown.co.uk, Hatters Player and check out our ever-growing Facebook and Twitter feeds #COYH


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