League One Preview: Burton host Chesterfield while Walsall travel to Crewe
12th February 2016

Burton Albion have the chance to go seven points clear at the top of League One when they take on Chesterfield on Friday evening.

The leaders are four ahead of second-placed Walsall, despite losing two of their last four matches. Manager Nigel Clough remains confident his side do not need to replace their top-scorer Nasser El Khayati, despite selling the striker in January.

The visitors are a struggling Chesterfield side just one point above the relegation zone. The Spireites have lost three games on the bounce and will have a tough task to turn their fortunes around against the League One pacesetters.

Meanwhile, Walsall will continue their chase for automatic promotion when they take on a Crewe side who recorded their first win in nine last weekend.

After suffering a damaging 3-0 loss to Millwall last weekend, the Saddlers need to bounce back with pressure from the teams below. Right-back Jason Demetriou believes the West Midlands side are League One’s answer to Leicester City, with enough time left to turn around the four-point deficit to the Brewers.

23rd September 2015 - Capital One Cup - Walsall v Chelsea - Romaine Sawyers of Walsall tries to weave through the Chelsea defence - Photo: Paul Roberts / Offside.

Romaine Sawyers and his Walsall team-mates will be looking to return to winning ways against Crewe after defeat to Millwall last time out.

Alexandra are in 22nd, four points from safety. Unbeaten in four, the Railwaymen’s 2-0 win against Rochdale last time out was their first since November and could spark a revival.

A point and a place behind Walsall are Wigan Athletic. With six wins and three draws in nine league matches they are the form side, but the Latics have played an additional game compared to the two sides above them.

They take on fellow Latics Oldham, whose fortunes are rather different. On 24 points, they are second from bottom but have three games in hand over their opponents, which will give them hope for the relegation run-in.

Gillingham are only behind Wigan on goal difference, and they take on an impressive Barnsley side who have won their last seven games. Justin Edinburgh’s men have picked up just one win in five which has damaged their chances of automatic promotion, so need a win to stay in contention.

The Tykes meanwhile have triumphed in every game since Christmas, and are now 13 points clear of the bottom-four and just five points off the play-offs. This run has continued even though boss Lee Johnson left the club to join relegation-threatened Bristol City in the Championship.

Elsewhere, unbeaten in four Blackpool take on a Shrewsbury side just one point above the drop.

The Tangerines are on 33 points in 18th, three points above the Shrews having not played since their impressive victory against Gillingham. Town are winless in three and are in danger of falling into the drop if they do not turn their results around.

It is not looking good for Colchester, who are bottom and eight points from safety on 22. Manager Kevin Keen said the job had been more of a challenge than he had realised and the U’s need to start picking up some wins, and quickly.

Swindon are the visitors who are winless in four, on 36 points. Having taken 16 points on their travels, Town will need to pick up their away form if they want to keep a safe distance from the drop.

League One Fixtures

Friday, February 12

Burton Albion vs Chesterfield United (19:45)

Saturday, February 13 (3pm)

Blackpool vs Shrewsbury Town
Colchester United vs Swindon Town
Coventry City vs Bury
Crewe Alexandra vs Walsall
Doncaster Rovers vs Sheffield United
Gillingham vs Barnsley
Peterborough United vs Bradford City
Port Vale vs Fleetwood Town
Rochdale vs Millwall
Scunthorpe United vs Southend United
Wigan Athletic vs Oldham Athletic

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