With the big kick-off just two days away, check out our comprehensive League Two preview compiled by those who report on their clubs week in, week out.

Here's a club by club guide from sports reporters across the country covering teams in the fourth tier.


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Simon Parker/Telegraph & Argus

CLUB MANAGER – Gary Bowyer

GROUND – Valley Parade

Main summer signings: James Vaughan, Clayton Donaldson, Matt Palmer, Ben Richards-Everton.

Main summer departures: Jack Payne, David Ball, Lewis O’Brien.

Fans expectations: The fans are back onside after a dreadful 18 months as Gary Bowyer rebuilds a club ruined by former chairman Edin Rahic. It is looking more like a team now than a collection of individuals and there is a belief that Bowyer can take them straight back up as he did with Blackpool.

One to watch: Sean Scannell. The winger has seen his last two seasons ruined by injury and sat out six months of Bradford’s relegation with a fractured back. Having shown flashes of form when he did come back, Scannell should be a big player in League Two if – and that’s a big if – he can stay fit.

Promotion: Plymouth, Bradford, Salford, Scunthorpe

Relegation: Macclesfield, Morecambe


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Andrew Georgeson/Cambridge News/CambridgesshireLive

CLUB MANAGER – Colin Calderwood

GROUND - The Abbey Stadium

Main summer signings: Kyle Knoyle, Luke Hannant, Harvey Knibbs, Andrew Dallas

Main summer departures: Jevani Brown, David Amoo, Brad Halliday

Fans expectations: Extremely cautious optimism. After a stressful season last time out, during which United seemed to be sleepwalking towards the National League, a mid-table finish would be a vast improvement. Despite a largely quiet summer, they’ve stumbled across a very decent looking squad. Colin Calderwood sets the side up to be functional (4-4-2/4-4-1-1), but effective. The defence has certainly improved over the summer, but goal scoring remains a concern.

One to watch: Kyle Knoyle. The attacking full-back has been seen as somewhat of a coup after rejecting a new contract at Swindon. He played incredibly well against Cambridge at the Abbey last season, and seems a more than capable replacement for Brad Halliday.

Promotion: Plymouth, Bradford, Salford, Northampton.

Relegation: Morecambe, Macclesfield


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Jon Colman, News & Star

CLUB MANAGER – Steven Pressley

GROUND - Brunton Park

Main summer signings: Byron Webster, Nathaniel Knight-Percival, Jack Bridge, Harry McKirdy, Christie Elliott

Main summer departures: Jamie Devitt, Tom Parkes, Gary Liddle, Jason Kennedy, Liam McCarron

Fans expectations: With lots of recruitment still needed at the time of writing, especially in attack, 'cautious' would probably be the best word to describe expectations. Carlisle's squad has been subjected to the biggest turnover of almost any League Two club - partly for financial reasons, partly because of the wish to sign a different profile of player. There is hope that Pressley's professed "high-energy" style can reshape Carlisle this season but a reliance on loans and short-term deals is regarded by some as a risk.

One to watch: Jack Bridge. Signed from Northampton, the midfielder hopes to help fill the void left by Blackpool-bound Jamie Devitt in a creative role. Has often been described as a player of high potential who was left frustrated by being played out of position at previous clubs. Will need to deliver with goals and assists if he gets the opportunity he craves.

Promotion: Mansfield, Newport, Northampton, Plymouth

Relegation: Oldham, Macclesfield


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Jon Palmer, Gloucestershire Live/Gloucestershire Echo

CLUB MANAGER – Michael Duff

GROUND - Jonny-Rocks Stadium

Main summer signings: Reuben Reid, Tahvon Campbell, Rohan Ince, Charlie Raglan, Dan Bowry

Main summer departures: Kevin Dawson, Nigel Atangana, Jordon Forster, Tyrone Barnett, Johnny Mullins

Fans expectations: Michael Duff has lifted expectations after an impressive start as manager, but with a reduced budget most fans would settle for a solid, mid-table season after struggling for much of 2018/19.

The squad is smaller and much will depend on keeping Rohan Ince and Chris Hussey fit, as well as reintroducing striker Reuben Reid as quickly as possible after knee surgery.

One to watch: Rohan Ince. Missed the whole of last season with a knee injury, but has plenty of Championship experience and could help solve the midfield problem Cheltenham struggled with for much of last term. Tall, strong and comfortable on the ball, if Ince stays fit he should be an excellent acquisition.

Promotion: Mansfield Town, Salford City, Plymouth, Colchester United.

Relegation: Crawley Town, Macclesfield Town.


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Jon Waldron/Colchester Daily Gazette


GROUND – JobServe Community Stadium

Main summer signings: Jevani Brown, Dean Gerken, Luke Gambin, Paris Cowan-Hall, Omar Sowunmi

Main summer departures: Sammie Szmodics, Frankie Kent, Brennan Dickenson, Mikael Mandron, Rene Gilmartin

Fans expectations: Most Colchester United fans are expecting a top-seven finish as a minimum. The U’s only missed out on the play-offs by a point last season having gone into 2019 in the top three. This is Colchester’s fourth successive season in League Two so they want to see a promotion.

One to watch: Andre Hasanally. The young attacker has played a prominent role in pre-season and is seen as the next talented young player off the conveyor belt. He is only 17 but trained with the first team last season and is highly rated by McGreal.

Promotion: Mansfield Town, Plymouth Argyle, Bradford City, Colchester United.

Relegation: Cambridge United, Morecambe.


NAME/NEWSPAPER –Mark Dunford/Crawley Observer

CLUB MANAGER – Gabriele Cioffi

GROUND - The People's Pension Stadium

Main summer signings: Ashley Nadesan, Beryly Lubala, Mason Bloomfield, Jack Powell, Jordan Tunnicliffe

Main summer departures: Yusuf Mersin, Bondz N'Gala

Fans expectations: After a disappointing start last season, the optimism this time around for a better season is building, especially as the Reds have managed to keep hold of their best players and added to the squad with some exciting young talent. After four stale seasons a lot more is expected this time around.

One to watch: David Sesay has attracted serious interest from League One and Championship clubs over the summer after some eye-catching displays last season. The exciting left-sided defender is just as comfortable bombing forward as he is defending. He will be a key part if Crawley have play-off hopes.

Promotion: Bradford, Salford, Mansfield

Relegated: Grimsby, Morecambe


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Peter Morse/Crewe Chronicle

CLUB MANAGER – David Artell

GROUND - Alexandra Stadium

Main summer signings: Olly Lancashire and Daniel Powell

Main summer departures: George Ray, Jordan Bowery, Ben Garratt, Michael Raynes, Alex Nicholls

Fans expectations: Missing out on the play-offs by six points was constituted Crewe's best season for some time - so supporters will be hoping for a play-off place this time around. Their largely homegrown squad is maturing and capable, and there is a good sprinkling of experience to add balance. However, the clear lack of financial ability to make a couple of key additions in the right areas could harm their chances.

One to watch: Charlie Kirk. The creative attacker, who often plays left of a front three, emerged as an important player last season. He had a hand in more Crewe goals than any other player, scoring 11 himself and is expected to earn a move to a bigger club if he can continue in the same vein.

Promotion: Northampton, Plymouth, Scunthorpe, Mansfield

Relegation: Macclesfield, Morecambe


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Stuart James Devon Live/Express & Echo

CLUB MANAGER – Matt Taylor

GROUND - St James Park

Main summer signings: Jon Maxted, Tom Parkes, Robbie Cundy, Nigel Atangana, Nicky Ajose

Main summer departures: Christy Pym, Troy Brown, Hiram Boateng.

Fans expectations: I think the fans will be looking towards a play-off place. It happened two years running and then City, in Matt Taylor's first season in charge, missed out by a point last season.

One to watch: Archie Collins. The latest in a long line of homegrown youngsters to come through the Academy and break into the first team. Played as a defensive midfielder for much of last season, but expected to play further forward this year, but a very talented ball player.

Promotion: Bradford City, Plymouth Argyle, Swindon Town, Mansfield Town.

Relegation: Macclesfield Town, Cheltenham Town


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Ashley Loveridge/ Stroud News & Journal

CLUB MANAGER – Mark Cooper

GROUND – The New Lawn

Main summer signings: Adam Smith, Liam Kitching, Matt Mills, Ebou Adams, Kevin Dawson, Matty Stevens.

Main summer departures: Reece Brown, Christian Doidge, Gavin Gunning, Paul Digby, Lee Collins.

Fans expectations: After narrowly missing out on automatic promotion and falling short in the play-offs, optimism should be rife amongst Forest Green fans. However, the loss of kingpin striker Christian Doidge to Scottish Premiership outfit Hibernian and with key midfielder Reece Brown making his way to Championship Huddersfield Town, Rovers’ faithful are not expecting their side to reach the same dizzy heights in only their third season of league football.

One to watch: It looked like the burden of scoring goals would fall on the athletic shoulders of Shawn McCoulsky. But striker Matty Stevens became the club's marquee signing last Saturday from Peterborough.

Promotion: Northampton, Bradford, Walsall, Mansfield

Bottom four: Morecambe, Cambridge, Crawley, Macclesfield


NAME/NEWSPAPER: Liam Wood, Grimsby Live

CLUB MANAGER: Michael Jolley

GROUND: Blundell Park

Main summer signings: Matt Green, James Hanson, Moses Ogbu, Elliott Hewitt.

Main summer departures: Danny Collins, Alex Whitmore, Reece Hall-Johnson, Martyn Woolford, Wes Thomas.

Fans expectations: Progression is the order of the day for most Town fans. A relegation battle in 2017/2018 was followed up by a rather more comfortable finish last season, with the development of youth players a real highlight of the campaign. The majority would be pleased with a top-half finish.

One to watch: Matt Green and James Hanson are welcome additions in attacking quarters. But one of the men who impressed most last season, Jake Hessenthaler, will be the key player. Calm and composed, his positional sense is outstanding. A hugely consistent performer in the middle of the park.

Promotion: Bradford City, Mansfield, Northampton, Plymouth Argyle

Relegation: Cambridge, Macclesfield


NAME/NEWSPAPER: George Sessions/East London Advertiser

CLUB MANAGER: Ross Embleton is officially interim head coach after Justin Edinburgh passed away on June 8

GROUND: Brisbane Road

Main summer signings: Forwards Lee Angol and Conor Wilkinson have signed for undisclosed fees from Shrewsbury Town and Dagenham & Redbridge. Josh Wright has also signed on a free from Bradford City. He was essentially an Orient player before Edinburgh, his good friend, passed away, so will have plenty of motivation to do well at O’s in his third stint at the club.

Main summer departures: Forwards Josh Koroma and Macauley Bonne have moved up to the Championship, signing for Huddersfield Town and Charlton Athletic respectively. They were untouchable in the first half of last season and scored 35 goals between them.

Fans expectations: The fans will hope for another enjoyable season primarily and to be away from the threat of relegation, given the extremely difficult and emotional summer the club has had. If O’s can get off to a strong start, fans will feel a play-off push is not out the window.

One to watch: Jordan Maguire-Drew. He was impressive after joining in January and has general been a very good player in the National League. Loan spells in League Two have not gone so well, but he is capable of scoring and claiming plenty of assists.

Promotion: Newport County, Forest Green Rovers, Scunthorpe United, Salford City

Relegation: Crawley Town, Crewe Alexandra


CLUB MANAGER: Sol Campbell

GROUND: Moss Rose

Main summer signings: Jak McCourt (Swindon), Joe Ironside (Kidderminster), Emmanuel Osadebe (Cambridge), Jacob Blyth (Barrow), Theo Vassell (Port Vale).

Main summer departures: Harry Smith (Northampton), Ryan Lloyd (Port Vale), Callum Evans (Port Vale)

Fans expectations: Survived on the final day of last season, after Sol Campbell did a fantastic job of saving them, despite looking like certainties for relegation. With a full pre-season behind him, Campbell will hope to build on that survival but with problems off the pitch, they could face another season of struggle.


NAME/NEWSPAPER – John Lomas/Mansfield Chad

CLUB MANAGER – John Dempster

GROUND – One Call Stadium

Main summer signings: Nicky Maynard, Andy Cook, Dion Donohue, Aidan Stone.

Main summer departures: Will Atkinson, Ben Turner, Tyler Walker (the biggest loss after being 26-goal top scorer), Gethin Jones, Nicky Ajose, Jorge Grant. Also, defender David Mirfin has retired.

Fans expectations: After coming so close over the past two seasons and with the quality of the strikers brought in this summer to bolster a squad that has stayed together, fans expect rookie boss John Dempster to finally get them over the promotion line.

One to watch: Andy Cook scored goals and impressed for Walsall in League One last season and is the big, bruising centre forward Stags lacked last year.

Promotion: Mansfield Town, Bradford City, Salford City, Plymouth Argyle

Relegation: Morecambe, Macclesfield Town


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Gavin Browne/Morecambe Visitor

CLUB MANAGER – Jim Bentley

GROUND - Globe Arena

Main summer signings: Cole Stockton, John O'Sullivan, Adam Buxton, Shaun Miller, Lewis Alessandra

Main summer departures: Aaron Collins, Zak Mills.

Fans expectations: Every year, Morecambe defy the odds to stay in the EFL but a fine end to last season saw them finish 18th. The hope is that Jim Bentley's players can improve upon that but Andy Fleming's injury-enforced retirement leaves a big hole in midfield.

One to watch: Cole Stockton. The striker will be charged with replacing last season's top scorer, Aaron Collins, but he knows the division and the club well after a previous loan spell which saw the former Tranmere Rovers man score 10 times in the first half of the 2016/17 season.

Promotion: Bradford City, Plymouth Argyle, Scunthorpe United, Mansfield Town

Relegation: Crawley Town, Macclesfield Town


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Andrew Penman, South Wales Argus

CLUB MANAGER – Michael Flynn

GROUND – Rodney Parade

Main summer signings: – Tom King (goalkeeper), Kyle Howkins (centre-back), Dan Leadbitter (right-back), Ryan Haynes (left-back), Corey Whitely (winger, attacking midfielder)

Main summer departures: – Joe Day (goalkeeper, Cardiff City), Dan Butler (left-back, Peterborough), David Pipe (right-back, retired), Andrew Crofts (midfield, released), Tyler Forbes (right-back, released)

Fans expectations: Having lost in the play-off final in May, expectations will be greater this season and most fans will be hoping for another top-seven finish. Manager Michael Flynn has lost two key players (Day and Butler) but recruited well on a tight budget. He still needs to strengthen midfield and attack.

One to watch: Corey Whitely has excited fans with his pre-season performances. The former Ebbsfleet United forward can play in a number of different positions behind the front line and is not afraid to take defenders on. Possesses plenty of pace and could take some of the goalscoring burden off the front two.

Promotion: Bradford, Scunthorpe, Salford, Forest Green

Relegation: Macclesfield, Cambridge


NAME/NEWSPAPER – James Heneghan, Northampton Chronicle & Echo

CLUB MANAGER – Keith Curle

GROUND - Sixfields

Main summer signings: Nicky Adams, Alan McCormack, Charlie Goode, Harry Smith, Chris Lines

Main summer departures: Aaron Pierre, Ash Taylor, John-Joe O'Toole, Sam Foley, David Buchanan

Fans expectations: Cobblers fans were expecting a promotion challenge this season even before the rush of signings during a hectic summer as manager Keith Curle revamps his squad. With 11 already in, including the likes of Alan McCormack and Nicky Adams, and more expected in the coming weeks, anything short of a play-off challenge will represent disappointment.

One to watch: Nicky Adams. The winger makes a popular return to Northampton having starred in their 2016 title success. Often seen leading the assists stats - he finished with four more than anyone else in League Two last season - Adams should provide Cobblers with that extra spark of creativity they were sorely lacking last term.

Promotion: Plymouth, Bradford, Northampton, Salford

Relegation: Crawley, Morecambe.


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Adam Lord, Oldham Times

CLUB MANAGER – Laurent Banide

GROUND – Boundary Park

Main summer signings: Alex Iacovitti (Nottingham Forest), Zak Mills (Morecambe), Gary Woods (Hamilton), Scott Wilson (Macclesfield), Desire Segbe Azankpo (FK Senica)

Main summer departures: George Edmundson (Rangers), Jose Baxter (Plymouth), Peter Clarke, Dan Gardner (both released), Callum Lang (end of loan)

Fans expectations: The fans expect to be at the sharp end of the division but former Monaco boss Laurent Banide, who has spent most of the last 11 years in the Middle East, and some of his players are new to English football, it’s hard to know how things will come together.

One to watch: Of the unlikely arrivals at Boundary Park in recent seasons, Gevaro Nepomuceno looks at home with Latics. Scored six goals last season and was at the Gold Cup with Curacao this summer. A threat from wide areas.

Promoted: Plymouth, Salford, Mansfield, Forest Green Rovers

Relegated: Macclesfield, Cambridge


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Chris Errington/Plymouth Herald


GROUND - Home Park

Main summer signings: Will Aimson, Danny Mayor, Callum McFadzean, Dom Telford (all Bury), Joe Edwards (Walsall)

Main summer departures: Graham Carey (CSKA Sofia), Ryan Edwards (Blackpool), Freddie Ladapo (Rotherham United), Ruben Lameiras (Famalicao), Yann Songo'o (Scunthorpe United)

Fans expectations: The appointment of Ryan Lowe as manager has created a buzz around Home Park despite the bitter disappointment of relegation from League One. He gained a reputation at Bury last season for his attacking style of football and the Green Army are eager to see the same.

One to watch: Danny Mayor. The 28-year-old was regarded by many as the best player in League Two last season and capable of playing at a higher level. He inherits the number 10 shirt which has been vacated by Graham Carey, who was the Pilgrims' talisman for the past four seasons.

Promotion: Plymouth, Mansfield, Salford, Scunthorpe.

Relegation: Macclesfield, Morecambe


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Mike Baggaley/Stoke Sentinel


GROUND - Vale Park

Main summer signings: Marc Cullen, David Amoo, Richie Bennett

Main summer departures: Sam Hornby, Luke Hannant, Ricky Miller, Antony Kay

Fans expectations: After spending the last two seasons scrapping just to stay in the Football League, fans are hoping for progress and fewer alarms for a club under new ownership.

One to watch: Mark Cullen. The free transfer signing from Blackpool has had injury problems over the last two years but the striker has a decent goal record and cost Blackpool £180,000 from Luton in 2015.

Promotion: Plymouth, Bradford, Mansfield, Forest Green

Relegation: Macclesfield, Crawley


CLUB MANAGER – Graham Alexander

GROUND - Peninsula Stadium

Main summer signings: Richie Towell (Brighton, free), Kyle Lethern (Plymouth, free), Luke Armstrong (Middlesbrough, undisclosed), Cameron Burgess (Scunthorpe, loan)

Main summer departures: Matt Green (Grimsby, free)

Fans expectations: It is difficult to predict how Salford will do this season. Some have them tipped for promotion, while some expect them to be a bit lower down. Spent big during last season and eventually gained their ambition of promotion. Will always have money to spend and likely to be a lot of focus on them due to the Class of 92.


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Paul Crute/Scunthorpe Telegraph


GROUND - Glanford Park (Sands Venue Stadium)

Main summer signings: Yann Songo’o, Alex Gilliead, Kgosi Ntlhe, Andy Butler, Jake Eastwood

Main summer departures: Funso Ojo, Josh Morris, Byron Webster, Jon Flatt, Charlie Goode

Fans expectations: Scunthorpe United fans will be hoping for an immediate return to League One after a hugely disappointing season last time out. They have a new manager in Paul Hurst, who is proven at this level and his transfer dealings so far have been good. They still need a proven striker at this level that will be able to get well into double figures.

One to watch: Andy Butler. The centre back returned to the club after an 11-year absence and was universally welcomed by fans. Many have said he should be made captain and he instantly makes a defence that shipped so many goals last season look more solid.

Promotion: Northampton, Bradford, Scunthorpe, Mansfield

Relegation: Crawley, Morecambe


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Dan Mountney/The Comet

CLUB MANAGER – Dino Maamria

GROUND - The Lamex Stadium

Main summer signings: Dean Parrett, Chris Stokes, Paul Digby

Main summer departures: Ilias Chair, Dino Maamria described the youngster as the best player to pull on a Stevenage shirt.

Fans expectations: With a new 1,000 seat stand, a new badge, shares of sale to supporters, a massive sponsorship deal with Burger King and nearly making the play-offs last season, there is a lot of optimism around the club. Fans will be hoping Boro can go one step further this season.

One to watch: Terence Vancooten. Having played little until the back of the season, the central defender slotted into the back three when Dino Maamria changed his system and he grasped the opportunity. With international experience having played for Guyana at this summer's Gold Cup, an abundance of pace, height, confidence on the ball, strong in the tackle and just 21-years-old, he has everything to be a top class centre-back for Stevenage next season.

Promotion: Plymouth, Colchester, Northampton, Stevenage (let's hope)

Relegation: Macclesfield, Morecambe


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Harry Abbott/Swindon Advertiser

CLUB MANAGER – Richie Wellens

GROUND – The County Ground

Main summer signings: Jerry Yates, Adam May, Zeki Fryers, Dan Ballard, Mathieu Baudry

Main summer departures: Lawrence Vigouroux, Matt Taylor, Kyle Knoyle, Marc Richards, Jak McCourt

Fans expectations: After two seasons without contending for promotion, supporters will be expecting Town to at least challenge for the play-offs. After arriving at the club last November, Richie Wellens has had plenty of time now to stamp his authority on the squad.

One to watch: Michael Doughty. Was the club’s top scorer last season as well as player of the year - despite missing around a third of the season due to injuries. Signed a new contract in the summer and could comfortably be ranked amongst the best midfielders in the league with an injury-free campaign.

Promotion: Bradford, Mansfield, Salford, Forest Green.

Relegation: Morecambe, Macclesfield


NAME/NEWSPAPER – Joe Masi, Express & Star

CLUB MANAGER – Darrell Clarke

GROUND - Banks's Stadium

Main summer signings: James Clarke, Mat Sadler, Stuart Sinclair, Danny Guthrie, Elijah Adebayo.

Main summer departures: Andy Cook, George Dobson, Zeli Ismail, Nicky Devlin, Luke Leahy.

Fans expectations: Supporters know new boss Darrell Clarke isn’t going to turn around a club that has got used to losing games overnight. But Clarke has an outstanding record of winning promotion and fans will be hoping he can keep the Saddlers in contention for the play-offs.

One to watch: James Clarke. Perhaps a centre-back isn’t the most exciting choice, but Walsall conceded a lot of goals last season. And Clarke appears to be the exact type of player they were missing. He’s composed, reads the game well, is strong in the air and also quick. He rejected a contract from Bristol Rovers to join and looks an excellent signing.

Promotion: Mansfield, Bradford, Forest Green, Walsall (play-offs)

Relegation: Carlisle, Macclesfield