LThe Sky Blues will be determined to avenge last weekend’s late collapse against Swindon as they face Peterborough United at the Ricoh Arena on Saturday. With an unbeaten home record still intact for Mowbray’s men, Coventry will be confident of a result on their own turf.
With Peterborough bringing a healthy contingent of supporters, a good atmosphere is expected as both sides chase promotion this season. As entertainment goes, this encounter looks a certainty to produce goals and a number of talented players will grace the turf.
Coventry City go in to the game on the back of an uninspiring run of three draws. Prior to the consecutive stalemates, the Sky Blues defeated Shrewsbury comfortably at the Ricoh before edging past Fleetwood at Higbury Stadium.
This means that in their last five games, 2 wins and 3 draws have been acquired to hand City 9 points from a possible 15. A dip in form has certainly came about but the Sky Blues remain unbeaten in the month of October and they’re sitting in 4th position. They’ll be hoping the Posh don’t haunt them come Saturday.
The Posh will be in confident mood for the tie after they swept Doncaster aside last weekend with a 4-0 victory. Graham Westley’s newly inherited side are the division’s leading scorers and they’ll be looking to add to their goal tally.
In their last five league fixtures they’ve been in impressive form, picking up 3 wins, 1 draw and 1 loss. This positive set of results has seen them climb to 10th position in League One, but they are only 3 points shy of the playoff positions.
The Sky Blues were disappointed to learn that Jordan Willis could be set for a prolonged period on the sidelines as he picked up a knee injury whilst playing for the Under 21’s. Along with the defender, City will be without Ivor Lawton and Reda Johnson who have both been ruled out for the campaign whilst James Maddison is still a month or so away from fitness.
Bryn Morris will also no longer be available for selection as the youngster saw his loan cut short by parent club Middlesbrough on Tuesday. Everybody else in the squad is in good health and the manager could name the same eleven that started at the County Ground.
Peterborough are set to be without striker Marcus Maddison as an ankle injury is still causing him problems. Gabriel Zakuani could also miss out as he suffered a suspected hamstring strain versus Doncaster, although Westley said he will assess the situation.
Jack Baldwin and Joe Gormley are long term absentees with anterior cruciate ligament injuries so they’ll miss the fixture along with Kgosi Nthle who’s been ruled out for 6 weeks. Harry Beautyman and Alex Davey have both retuned to training but they are yet to return to full fitness.
Ones To Watch:
The Ivory Coast international signed for Peterborough in the summer of 2015 from Serie B side Bari. His immediate impact at London Road was limited as Dave Robertson used him sparingly during the opening weeks of the season. Recently, however, the striker has been handed a lifeline and he’s taken it with some dazzling displays.
With his attributes showcased on a more regular basis, Coulibaly has flourished and he is finding life in League One rather enjoyable. An abundance of pace and technical ability enables him to frighten any defence and Peterborough fans will hope he can have an influence on Saturday’s result.
After progressing through Charlton Athletic’s academy, Otzumer moved abroad to Manisaspor aged 16. Following the stint abroad, the small midfielder looked to make his mark in the English game and he crossed the border to sign for non-league Dulwich Hamlet. After scoring 49 goals in 78 appearances at the club, Peterborough United pursued an interest to bring the player to London Road in 2014.
This season has proved to be a successful one for him so far as he’s cemented his place at the tip of the diamond in Posh’s midfield. Graham Westley has labelled him as a ‘wizard’ and he could be a massive part of the Peterborough side despite his small stature. With his skilful nature and versatility on the ball, City will have to keep a close eye on him.
“It will be a real test for us, Peterborough have been wonderful since Graham Westley arrived and it will be an exciting game come Saturday.”
“The fans could be in for a treat and I would come to the Ricoh to see this game, it’s one of the leagues top scorers versus a team that’s got a strong defensive record with many clean sheets so it will be a fascinating encounter.”
“We have put the Swindon game to bed now in our minds, we went through the footage Monday and we don’t want to be losing a two-goal lead many more times this season.”
“We can erase these memories on Saturday with three points and that’s what we are aiming for.”
View From The Opposition – Graham Westley:
“Coventry away is a fabulous fixture for us right now, don’t get me wrong Coventry are a very good side and they will be well-organised and well-managed.”
“They have been playing well and been near the top of the table for most of the season, but this is the best time for us to play them. If you could pick a time to go to Coventry it would be after you’d delivered a performance like we did last Saturday.”
“Obviously it will still be a tough test, but we are all looking forward to it and I suspect our fans will be the same.”
“It’s a great stadium to visit and we should have a big away following. It’s the perfect test for us to see how far we have come in recent weeks. We will certainly be in a good frame of mind. We will be positive and we will take the game to Coventry.”
City have been in a little rut of late but we aren’t losing games. It’s positive that we are picking up points but we need to transform these draws in to victories, can we get back to winning ways on Saturday?
Peterborough are a very, very good side and I fully expect them to challenge for the playoffs this season. Their attacking prowess is undoubtedly something to be wary of and I envision them scoring past a strong City defence at the weekend.
One thing that does fill me with optimism, however, is their susceptibility to ship goals at the other end. Although our goals have came at a lesser rate recently, we do have a lot of talent in forward areas and if we can perform to our best ability goals of our own should be on the agenda.
It looks likely to be an enthralling encounter and both sets of fans will be hoping for a result. Peterborough will be determined to gain some revenge for last term’s loss at the Ricoh, it is City’s job to stop this happening.
My Score Prediction
Coventry City 2-1 Peterborough