League Two Review – Week 5

Last week saw Exeter City leap into the playoff spots with convincing victories over both Crawley Town and Scunthorpe United. Elsewhere in Sky Bet League Two, new leaders were crowned as the top clubs shuffled for position.

Walsall extended their stunning unbeaten run to 13 without loss with a hard-fought 2-2 draw away at Barrow. Falling behind on two occasions, a second-half penalty from Caolan Lavery ensured the Saddlers maintained their streak, the third-longest run of anyone in UEFA’s top five leagues and the EFL.

A 3-0 trouncing of Bradford City at Valley Parade sent Newport County back to the summit of the standings in what is their best-ever start to an EFL campaign. The Exiles have claimed a total of six victories from their opening eight ties, dropping points to a single draw and a loss to second-placed Cambridge United.

Contrastingly, Morecambe’s best start for five years crashed to an abrupt end when they surrendered a one-goal advantage to Forest Green Rovers by way of two late goals. The Shrimps plummeted to 11th from sixth, while Rovers moved up to fourth, just four points behind the leaders.

Southend United suffered their fifth shutout defeat of the season on Saturday, with League Two returnees Tranmere Rovers winning 2-0, despite United chalking up greater possession and shots. Southend continue to hold the bottom spot, three points adrift of safety.

Leyton Orient kept their away goal-scoring streak going with a 2-0 win on the road against Stevenage. The O’s have scored in each of their last five matches on the road, but have only converted the prowess into a win twice.

Bolton Wanderers earned a surprise point at once-table-topping Cambridge United when Antoni Sarcevic netted late to cancel out teammate Billy Crellin’s own-goal 10 minutes earlier. United may have been knocked off their perch, but they continue to boast the division’s top scorer as Paul Mullin’s record of 10 goals from eight appearances remains unchallenged, despite drawing a blank against Bolton.

Unsurprisingly, considering the lack of supporters, there has proven to be very little home advantage with 34 percent of the 95 matches played resulting in a victory for the hosts. Across the league, a total of 231 goals have been scored, averaging the distribution at 2.43 goals per game.

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