Next Up: Shrewsbury Town vs Exeter City

City put in a battling second half display and may have been disappointed to be pegged back to a 2-2 draw against promotion-chasing Bolton. Sonny Cox celebrated his new contract with a pair of wonder strikes, and will hope to bring that form into a vital Tuesday night clash that could see one of the sides involved virtually book their League One place for next season. Cox was withdrawn late on but that may have been purely down to fatigue and he should be fine to lead the line again at Shrewsbury. Elsewhere Reece Cole is available after his suspension but the performance of Ryan Woods on Saturday may mean he has to come back from the bench – although Woods was another late withdrawal. Jack Aitchison’s return was welcome, while Will Aimson performed well in the place of Cheick Diabate.

Having languished in the lower reaches of the table all season under Matt Taylor (not that one), Shrewsbury turned to one of their old charges in the form of Paul Hurst to guide them to safety. Results have been patchy, particularly at home where the Shrews haven’t tasted victory since a 3-1 defeat of Fleetwood on New Year’s Day. They did, however, return triumphant from another six-pointer on Saturday, a 2-1 win at Port Vale elevating them to 17th, level on points with City but, amazingly considering City’s own poor goal difference, one behind on that score. Like with City goals have been a problem for Shrewsbury, with Daniel Udoh the top scorer with eight goals (six in the league). Former City favourite Ryan Bowman missed Saturday’s win over Port Vale and has just one league goal, that on the opening day of the season – although he did manage a hat-trick in the FA Cup against Notts County. Rayhaan Tullock signed on a short-term deal after leaving West Brom during the January window in order to try to provide more firepower.

The reverse fixture came during City’s wretched run and was just three days after the 7-0 humiliation at Bolton, and there was some respite at least with a clean sheet in a 0-0 draw, a match that won’t exactly go down in the annals as one of the classics. That epithet would be slightly more apt for City’s visit to Shrewsbury last season – City raced into a 2-0 lead with goals from Sweeney and Grounds, only for Pennington and Bayliss to level things up by half time then the comeback was completed in second half injury time through Chey Dunkley. That win gave Shrewsbury the league head to head lead at 18-17, with 16 draws.

The match officials for this game will be:-

Referee: David Rock
Assistant Referees: Karl Buckley and Daniel Robinson
Fourth Official : Steven Rushton

David Rock last refereed Exeter City in October this year which ended in a 4-1 defeat away at Charlton. He sent off Will Aimson, which the red card was later rescinded (see here). He’ll also be remembered for awarding a goal to Cambridge in the FA Cup the previous season which he apologised for afterwards admitting he made a mistake.

Interview with Gary Caldwell

Pre-match interview with Sonny Cox

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