Away games eh? Remember them? Feels like it’s been ages since United played anywhere other than the Abbey, but tomorrow we travel to the rural hamlet of Forest Green for a match of huge importance if we’re to make sure this season stays on track.
First things first, Forest Green isn’t actually a place. Whilst their stadium is made from wood, and they play in green they are actually based in the Gloucestershire town of Nailsworth, about 25 miles from Bristol. The very epitome of a rich mans hobby club, FGR have proven controversial during their short time in the Football League, not necessarily for its all-vegan menu, but mostly for egotistical owner Dale Vince’s decision to put three stars on their shirt, which will be coloured in gold should they eventually reach the Championship, as is his dream. Forest Green are owned not only by Vince (an eco-friendly Electricity provider) but also by calamity Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin, who will likely be playing in the Championship long before FGR reach it.
After a switch up against Gillingham in mid-week, Bonner has a few options open to him, with Greg Taylor ably deputising in midfield in place of Hiram Boateng who we probably won’t see any more of in a U’s shirt, being ruled out this week for a further 8 weeks following surgery on a shoulder injury.
We’ve said the last couple of games were must-wins, but after two league defeats on the trot this game takes on extra importance. Forest Green sit third in the table, and look sure to be up there at the end of the season.
Likely U’s Line-Up: Mitov, Knoyle, Cundy, Darling, Dunk, Hannant, Digby, Taylor, Iredale, Hoolahan, Mullin
With Joe Ironside also a potential injury doubt it’s looking likely Bonner will return to playing Mullin as a solo striker with Wes just behind. After his strong showing in midfield midweek Taylor could keep his place which would free up a space in central defence for Harry Darling to come back into the starting eleven. Otherwise, much the same as we’ve seen this season already, with Hannant & Dunk/Iredale providing width in front of Knoyle and Iredale or Dunk.
Who’s Their Player to Watch? We know how dangerous Jamille Matt can be from his time at Newport where he seemed to score against us every couple of weeks.
Whos In The Dugout? Mark Cooper was a huge success at P*sh, leading them to one win in thirteen games before being given the boot by dodgy Darragh, after some success at Notts County and Swindon he pitched up at Forest Green in 2016 where he’s been ever since.
What’s Their Recent Form Like? P5, W2, D2, L1 Scored 6, Against 4
Any Ex-United Players? None, although King of the Abbey Paul Wanless pitched up there for a couple of seasons after our relegation to the Conference, and later managed them.
Last Time Out: Cambridge 0-1 Forest Green, September 7 2019
Luke Hannant hit the bar and Marc Richards had a penalty saved in this early season defeat.
From The Archive: Cambridge 2-0 Forest Green, 23 April 2008
Excuse the short, grainy footage, but marvel in this clip of Wayne Hatswell firing in one hell of a free kick in a 2-0 win during our Conference days. It’s just a shame video of our 7-0 tonking of them the season after doesn’t exist on YouTube
UTAS Moosenet Tip: United 2-1, Mullin.