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League Two Preview

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 02/08/2008

THIS season League Two is wide open now that big spenders MK Dons and Peterborough have left for pastures new. Will Town be able to take advantage of the new order in the basement division? Here's our quick guide to the 24 runners and riders for 2008-2009 they will need to get the better of.

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Bradford - made a lot of changes over the summer, may take a while to settle.
Darlington - came close last year, but have a very different squad to last season. Bound to be serious contenders again.
Gillingham - probably the pick of the relegated sides.
Shrewsbury - signed Grant Holt in the summer but need to improve a lot on 18th last year to seriously challenge.
Rochdale - retained much of the side which got to the play-offs last year and could well get off to a good start.
Chesterfield - fell away last season after challenging for most of the campaign, will probably be in the reckoning again.
Wycombe - always the bridesmaid and never the bride, could this be Wycombe's year? With former Hull boss Peter Taylor at the helm many will think so.


Bournemouth - still in administration and too many off the field problems to seriously challenge.
Port Vale - possible dark horses, but will need to bounce back from a dismal campaign last year.
Brentford - a lot of new arrivals during the summer, Andy Scott's side should finish in the top half.
Aldershot - walked the Conference last season and only major player to leave is Joel Grant so should do well in League Two before Second Season Syndrome kicks in.
Lincoln - Sincil Bank must have had revolving doors over the summer so many players have come and gone. Should get off to a better start than last year!
Notts Co - still in the midst of a rebuilding process, but it can only be a matter of time before County start to fulfil their potential.
Grimsby - Town have strengthened their squad over the summer. Pre-season has not been very impressive, and Grimsby have a tough start. They also had a dismal end to last season. If they are in the top half after the first six games they will have done well.
Rotherham - One of the three clubs in administration trouble, who face a potential 15-point penalty deduction this season. Were docked 15-points last year.

Relegation Fodder

Barnet - Paul Fairclough's side had a good year last year but with so many big clubs on their doorstep they are always going to struggle to attract the crowds they need to rise up the league.
Bury - Improved upon their usual relegation dogfight last season, but it's hard to see them challenging near the top. Midtable at best.
Morecambe - One of the sides for whom survival is the main objective. How they must be relieved to see sides starting on negative points.
Chester - Fell away alarmingly in the latter half of last season and were lucky to survive. Expect more of the same.
Exeter - Most former league clubs tend to do fairly well when they come back to the league. Exeter probably weren't the second best side in the Conference last season, but should survive this year.
Macclesfield - We know what to expect from Keith Alexander's sides, although he seems to have lost his touch in his last job or two.
Dagenham - Feels like a non-league club, looks like a non-league club, won't be long before Daggers are once again a non-league club.
Accrington - The 45-year wait for a league return has hardly got the punters flocking to the Crown Ground and they will inevitably struggle again with such small crowds.
Luton - Will be a minor miracle if they survive this season having to start it on minus 30 points.

Our Tips

Top Three: Bradford, Rochdale, Wycombe Bottom Two: Luton, Dagenham Town Will Finish: 10th

League Two Outright Winners

(courtesy of Bet365)

Shrewsbury 8/1
Bradford 17/2
Darlington 9/1
Wycombe 10/1
Rochdale 10/1
Chesterfield 11/1
Gillingham 11/1
Port Vale 12/1
Bournemouth 14/1
Rotherham 16/1
Brentford 16/1
Aldershot 18/1
Lincoln City 18/1
Barnet 22/1
Exeter 22/1
Grimsby 28/1
Notts County 28/1
Morecambe 33/1
Chester 40/1
Macclesfield 40/1
Bury 40/1
Dagenham 50/1
Accrington Stanley 50/1
Luton 100/1

Each-way 1/4 1-2-3

Bet at Betfair

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