This Sporting Life

IT is set to be another exciting weekend in Sky Bet League One. Sporting Life’s Tom Carnduff previews the upcoming action.

Luton continue to go from strength-to-strength this season, and they will know the state of play by the time kick-off comes.

The Sky Sports audience are treated to the current League One leaders on Sunday, with a midday start for their game against Coventry.

The Hatters are now nine points clear of third and the odds-on favourites with Sky Bet to lift the trophy at the end of the season.

They face a tricky test this weekend though against a Coventry side with consecutive victories. The Sky Blues are still pushing for the play-offs and a win could move them to within four points of the top-six.

Barnsley will be hoping to close the gap with Luton’s later kick-off as they travel to take on Portsmouth, who are still aiming for a top-two finish.

Daniel Stendel’s side are unbeaten in their last five away league games, while the Fratton Park faithful have been treated to plenty of wins this season.

Something has to give, but the fact that Pompey’s last four have ended in draws could mean that the points are shared again here.

Sunderland have lost just two games this season which puts them at the top-end of the division. However, with 14 draws to their name, they find themselves amongst the chasing pack.

The impressive January addition of Will Grigg gives them extra firepower upfront though and the Northern Ireland international netted his first goal in midweek.

Bristol Rovers are up next for the Black Cats. While they may sit in 19th, they’ve managed to earn points in their last four games – including a draw at Portsmouth last time out.

Charlton meanwhile travel to an AFC Wimbledon side who remain bottom of the table. They’ve struggled for points this season, but a revival looks underway with back-to-back wins over sides around them in the standings.

Charlton look set for another appearance in the play-offs, which is testament to the job Lee Bowyer has done there, although top-two isn’t out of the question with 13 games still to go.

One side who will be hoping to join them in the top-six in May is Doncaster. Their recent victory over Peterborough moved them above Posh in the standings and they possess two games in hand.

Donny get the weekend underway at Scunthorpe, who have pushed themselves well clear of any relegation trouble under Stuart McCall.

Peterborough host Shrewsbury on Saturday. Last season’s beaten play-off finalists are looking to move out of the relegation zone, they are also currently enduring a seven-game winless run.

They have picked up points in recent weeks though and strong performances in the FA Cup should give them confidence that they can turn it around.

Blackpool continue to pick up results under Terry McPhillips and a seven-game unbeaten run sees them in eighth, just five points behind the play-off positions.

Their strong defensive record at home has played a significant part in their current position, while they match Luton and Barnsley for having the lowest goals against tally this season.

The Tangerines face a relegation-threatened Oxford side next. A point could be enough to move Karl Robinson’s side out of the drop zone.

Fleetwood are still firmly in the mix at the right end of the table, Joey Barton’s side winning three of their last five games.

The two games they have lost came against a strong Luton side and the in-form Scunthorpe, even then they were only defeats by a single goal.

They may have to settle for a point on Saturday though given Burton’s recent record with draws. The Brewers have seen five of their last seven games end with the points being shared.

Walsall will be trying to halt their losing streak as they take on Bradford. Both sides are battling to move themselves up the table.

The Bantams have lost just one of their last five and those points gained could be crucial come the season end.

Accrington will be looking to build on their largely-positive performance against Sunderland as they welcome Southend.

Stanley have seen wins in recent weeks when playing in front of their own supporters, which includes victory in their last game at the Wham Stadium.

Southend boast a decent enough away record though this season which sets it up to be a game that could go either way.

Wycombe will be looking to get back to winning ways against Gillingham, Wanderers currently occupy the final spot in the top-half.

Plymouth will also be aiming to continue their recent good form as they host Rochdale. Argyle are unbeaten in their last three, while Rochdale will be aiming to bounce back from consecutive defeats.

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