Swindon’s impeccable run of form has seen them rise to tenth in the league and only four points off the play-offs with the prospect of two games in four days against teams directly above and below them.
First up, Town look up geographically and numerically to Carlisle. The Robins sit a place below the Cumbrians and three points behind as they travel to Brunton Park before making the trip to Stevenage on Tuesday night, with the Hertfordshire side one place below Wellens’ men.
Carlisle were the Swindon boss’ first opponents after taking over in November and they gave him a very difficult welcome – a 4-0 defeat at the County Ground. Since then, however, Town’s form has been fifth best in the league
And the Wiltshire side’s feel-good factor has gone up another notch of late – with the addition of Theo Robinson, who scored two in his first three games after joining on deadline day, Swindon have been unbeaten in an impressive run of results all coming against play-off rivals.
February saw Wellens’ team see off MK Dons and Forest Green in impressive fashion before starting March with a comprehensive victory over fifth-placed Colchester putting them at the helm of a competitive chasing pack.
From the 15th December to the end of January, they won eight of their nine games and flew up the table but they picked up only two points in February – draws at the start and end of the month against Exeter and Colchester bookended defeats against Crewe and Carlisle.After a rip-roaring Christmas in which they won every game, Carlisle have struggled in their last five games.
Hallam Hope is the Cumbrians top goalscorer with 11 goals but also leads their assist charts with seven. Jamie Devitt is hot on his heels with ten strikes and has teed up his teammates six times too.
05 Jan 2013 Swindon Town v Carlisle United W 4-0 League One
30 Nov 2013 Swindon Town v Carlisle United W 3-1 League One
05 Apr 2014 Carlisle United v Swindon Town L 1-0 League One
05 Aug 2017 Carlisle United v Swindon Town W 1-2 League Two
07 Apr 2018 Swindon Town v Carlisle United D 0-0 League Two
17 Nov 2018 Swindon Town v Carlisle United L 0-4 League Two
When the two sides played in November, Richie Wellens was just starting out with his respective club whereas John Sheridan was in the last knockings of his tenure with the Cumbrians.
With Sheridan leaving for National League Chesterfield, Scotsman Steven Pressley took the reigns on 16th January 2019.
As a player, Pressley only ventured south of the border once – a year at Coventry City between 1995 and ’95. Aside from that, he spent time with both sides of the Old Firm Derby, starting his career at Rangers before two years at Celtic in the twilight of his career.
The club he spent, by far, the most time at was Heart of Midlothian – between 1998 and 2006 he made 333 appearances – a single substitute appearance included.
Pressley’s time Hearts saw his second of three Scottish Cups before moving to Celtic where he won his third Scottish Premiership and second consecutive domestic cup.
Pressley’s first experience of management came while still a player at Hearts – he took over as caretaker for two games during the 2004-/05 season, losing both games. It was his link with George Burley, who he had played under at Tyncastle Park, that got Pressley a chance as his national side’s assistant manager while sitting his UEFA Pro Licence.
His only management gong to date came during his time at Falkirk – after suffering relegation with them in 2010 he led them to Scottish Challenge Cup in 2012. His side overcame Hamilton Academical at Almondvale Stadium, although a year later Pressley accepted his first management job in England.
Coventry City were the side to tempt him away as he took over from Mark Robins and, in a turbulent time in the club’s history, the Scotsman was sacked after 100 games in charge and an average spell in charge.
Since then, Pressley has spent time with Pafos in the Cypriot First Division and Fleetwood before that before his time started at Brunton Park at the start of this year.