THE BIG MATCH

Oldham Athletic start life without Paul Dickov in the dugout when they host Yeovil Town at Boundary Park on Tuesday night.

The former striker was dismissed after a 3-1 loss to Walsall at the weekend, which left the Latics sitting 20th, just a single point above the relegation places, and youth coach Tony Philliskirk will be in charge for the match against the Glovers.

Despite their poor league form, Oldham have been strong in the FA Cup, and recently beat Liverpool 3-2 at home at the end of January.

That victory against the Reds was a highlight in a poor spell, the Latics have now gone nine games without a win in npower League 1, and that is what ultimately cost Dickov his job.

One of his final acts as manager was to bring in striker Lee Barnard, on loan from Southampton, and the 28-year-old scored on his debut against the Saddlers on Saturday.

The former Tottenham Hotspur man is looking forward to playing alongside attacking midfielder Jose Baxter and strike partner Chris Iwelumo, who also joined the club on loan, from Watford, on deadline day.

"Hopefully the partnership [with Iwelumo] will get better. And with Jose [Baxter] just behind us - such a talented player - hopefully there is a lot more to come," the 28-year-old told www.oldhamathletic.co.uk.

"We know we weren't good enough in the second half and we are determined to put it right on Tuesday [against Yeovil]."

The Glovers are currently seventh, one place outside the Play-Off spots and level on points with Sheffield United in sixth, following Saturday's 3-0 win over a strong Brentford side.

Paddy Madden opened the scoring with his 14th league goal of the season before Ed Upson made it two with a spectacular strike on his 100th appearance for the Somerset outfit, and Dan Burn completed the scoring late on.

That win extended Yeovil's winning streak to five matches, in which they have scored 12 goals and conceded just two, and manager Gary Johnson is hoping his side's recent form will help them as they head into two tough games away from home.

The 57-year-old told the Western Gazette: "We have got two away games now, both good games because I have got fond memories of playing away at Oldham and I have always had fond memories of playing away at Coventry [City] for some reason, we got some good results there.

"Coventry are going well but Oldham not so well. We have got to go and produce our form and make sure we come away with a result or two."

KEEP AN EYE ON

Two sides in the relegation mire alongside Oldham meet at Glanford Park, as Scunthorpe United host Portsmouth.

The Iron are 22nd in the table, one place above Pompey and one point behind 20th-placed Oldham, and last time out they lost 1-0 to Crewe Alexandra - their first loss in 2013 following three draws and a victory in January.

Holding Scunthorpe back is their form at Glanford Park. They have registered a league-low of just one win at home - which came back in September against Colchester United - and boss Brain Laws is keen for that to change.

"We've already stated many times that our home form has been our achilles heel - not just this year but last year as well. We need to put that right," the 51-year-old explained to www.scunthorpe-united.co.uk.

"Performances now are good, but we need to follow them up with results, particularly at home, where we've got a batch of games coming up in a short space of time.

"The pressure is on to start winning."

Portsmouth come into the match off the back of a torrid run - they haven't won in 16 and have lost their last seven games, which has seen them drop to 23rd and six points from safety.

On Saturday Pompey scored two goals, it was the first time they have managed more than one since December 8th, but it wasn't enough as Colchester United ran out 3-2 winners.

Despite the defeat, caretaker manager Guy Whittingham was pleased with his team's second-half performance and hopes to build on it against Scunthorpe, telling www.portsmouthfc.co.uk: "We'll go there on the back of a decent second half performance on Saturday and we need to take that into the match. We know we have to be consistent and we're trying to do that.

"At the moment people see Pompey as a team they can get three points from and Scunthorpe will be no different.

"We have to make sure we're ready and that we stay in the game - something that we didn't do against Colchester."

ELSEWHERE IN THE DIVISION

Colchester will hope to continue the momentum they gained from that win against Portsmouth when they host Swindon Town at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.

The U's are two places outside of the drop zone heading in to Tuesday's game, and a win against the Robins could take them six points clear of 21st-placed Bury.

Despite being undefeated in their last nine outings, Swindon will find it difficult, according to manager Paolo Di Canio. The Italian was only able to name six substitutes in Saturday's 1-1 draw with Crawley Town due to illness and injury, and that could be the same for the match with Colchester.

Another side in the promotion mix, but lacking form, is Sheffield United and they host Swindon's last opponents, Crawley Town.

The Blades have taken just two points from their last five outings but remain in the Play-Off places on goal difference.

Mid-table Crawley are also in a poor patch of form having won just one of their last five - a 3-0 victory against Colchester United on the opening day of 2013 - but a victory could see them rise five places and move to within touching distance of the Play-Off positions.

Completing the midweek npower League 1 schedule is Notts County and Stevenage, who meet at the Lamex Stadium.

Like Oldham, Notts County go into the fixture without a permanent manager in the dugout.

Keith Curle was relieved of his duties at Meadow Lane following Saturday's 3-1 defeat to bottom-of-the-league Hartlepool United, and caretaker manager Chris Kiwomya will be in charge for the trip to Hertfordshire.

Their opponents Stevenage have managed just three wins in 14 games and have lost their two most recent matches, both at home, to Doncaster Rovers and Leyton Orient.

A win for Gary Smith's 15th-placed side would lift them to 43 points, level with Notts County's tally and with a large goal swing they could overtake the Magpies in the League 1 table.

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