Ahead of the Game - A Big Week, We Presume

LIAM Spence takes a look ahead to the coming week at Home Park...

After suffering a 3-2 defeat to bottom-of-the-league Hartlepool, which saw Argyle extend their run to seven games without a win the Pilgrims will be looking to lick their wounds and recapture their home form when they take on Accrington Stanley, at Home Park.

Before that, the week begins with transfer deadline day, as teams the length and breadth of the country try to get players in by the 11pm deadline. John Sheridan has talked of his desire to bring Andy Kellett and Anthony O'Connor back in on loan, so watch this space should anything occur on that front.

On Wednesday, the Greens will take on Cheltenham Town in a Final Third Development League match as they look to build on their 2-1 success over Newport County, with the match to be contested at Cheltenham Training Ground, with a kick-off time of 2pm.

Despite the defeat to Ronnie Moore’s Hartlepool, new signings Ryan Brunt and Olly Lee opened their Argyle accounts and they will be hoping to play their part when we take on John Coleman’s Stanley, on Saturday.

John Sheridan’s side have only managed to secure three points from a possible 21, so a win over Stanley would be a boost for Argyle in maintaining their hopes of promotion as well as their track record at home.

Accrington lost 5-1 at home to 10-man Northampton on Saturday, in a game which saw the Cobblers play for 50 minutes with a numerical disadvantage after Ryan Cresswell was given his marching orders for a challenge in the box on last man Sean Maguire. The penalty yielded a goal for Accrington, bringing them back to 2-1; the Cobblers having lead 2-0 at the time through goals from Ricky Holmes and Marc Richards.

Despite being a man light, Northampton added three more to the tally to cruise to a comfortable victory. It was Accrington's fourth straight Sky Bet League 2 defeat; their only points in 2015 so far have come courtesy of win at Exeter City on January 3.

The away fixture between the Pilgrims and Stanley at the Storefirst Stadium saw the Lancashire club come out on top with Kal Naismith’s goal securing the points – much to the frustration of the otherwise dominant Argyle who expressed confidence and flair but received nothing for their endeavours.

A win for Argyle could see them rise to as high as 8th and re-establish themselves among the contenders for promotion. As for Accrington, the three points could see them move up one place to 15th and create further breathing space between them and other relegation candidates.

Follow Liam on Twitter @LiamSpence94