Following a draw against Ebbsfleet United last time out, the Coasters are back in action at Mill Farm against Oldham Athletic.

Two games unbeaten in all competitions have given Chris Beech’s side a platform to go and perform and pick up three points, but standing in their way is the Latics, who we cast an eye on. 

The Lowdown

The Coasters come into this midweek affair after picking up a well-earned point at home to Ebbsfleet United this weekend.

A Harry Davis header levelled the Coasters up in what was a dominating second-half performance, which on another day could have been a much bigger scoreline. However, the Coasters come into this game unbeaten in two and look promising on the attack.

The visitors come into this game unbeaten in eight and fresh from a derby day win away at Rochdale. The Latics scored four on the road in Micky Mellon’s first game as manager, which is one to remember for Oldham fans. 

Oldham come into this with a new sense of optimism in recent weeks after the sacking of David Unsworth, which has seen an upturn in form. Can the Coasters put a stop to the run that Latics are on?

The Manager: Micky Mellon

The Scot, with a taste for the North of England, as Micky moves back to an area that he knows so well. The Paisley-born midfielder started his career at Bristol City aged 17 and went on to make 35 appearances for the side from the West Country before making his move up North. 

Mellon found himself in the midlands at West Bromwich Albion. After spending one season there, Mellon was once again on the move, this time joining Fylde’s local neighbours Blackpool FC. 

After spending four years at four different clubs, Mellon finally settled down on the Fylde Coast and made 125 appearances over three seasons. Mellon went on to play for fellow Lancashire rivals Burnley FC, which was sandwiched between two spells at Tranmere, where he made just shy of 200 appearances.

He then dropped down the leagues and eventually retired in 2006 at Lancaster City. Mellon spent no time adjusting to coaching, immediately joining the Dolly Blues as Assistant Manager. Two years later, Mellon found his first managerial role joining Fleetwood Town in the Conference North.

In his first season at the club, he took them from basement boys to play-off hopefuls, finishing the campaign in 8th and reaching the Second Round of the FA Cup. In his second season at the club, it was even more successful, as he helped the Cod army gain promotion to the Conference as champions. 

The 2011/12 season was once again a success for Mellon, accumulating 103 points and taking Fleetwood to the Football League as champions and to the Third Round of the FA Cup. However, Mellon never got the opportunity he deserved and earned at Fleetwood and was sacked, despite the Cod Army sitting 4th in League Two. 

After a spell with Barnsley before achieving promotion with Shrewsbury Town, Mellon departed the Shrews for National League side Tranmere Rovers. His spell at Rovers was very successful, earning two promotions from the National League to League One, but unfortunately, the club was relegated due to points per game in COVID, and that saw the end of Mellon’s reign at Tranmere. 

Mellon then spent a year back up in his homeland at Dundee United – however, he could only take them to a ninth-place finish. 

At the end of his Scottish spell, he returned to Tranmere for a second time in management – however, he could not return to the happy times from previous seasons, stalemated in two seasons and got sacked last season.

Key Players

James Norwood – The former Tranmere man links up with former manager Mellon and is a key player in a quality Oldham team. An experienced head at this level with an eye for goal, he will be one to watch for the Coasters defence.

Liam Hogan – The leader of the pack, a serial winner at this level, and a key man at the back, Hogan is a vital part of the recent run. He’s played every minute of every game this season and will play a huge part in Micky Mellon’s tenure as manager.

Devarn Green – A tricky winger who has an abundance of talent, playing anywhere across the frontline or on the wings. Confident on the ball and someone who can attack with pace, he will be one to watch on Tuesday night.

Previous Meetings

The Coasters have never met the Latics in a competitive fixture – however, Fylde did secure a pre-season victory over the Latics, with two Nick Haughton goals contributing to a 2-1 win. 

Opposition Form

The Latics come into this game in what seems to be the perfect form after going unbeaten in eight games.

Since the sacking of David Unsworth, Latics have been on fire and have gone from lying around the relegation zone to play-off hopefuls, and with promotion expert Mellon now onboard, Oldham will be massive favourites for promotion. 

Match Preview is written by Benji Jenkinson.