Rovers are back under the floodlights tonight when they host Crewe Alexandra at Prenton Park in the Checkatrade Trophy.
It’s Tranmere’s first match in the competition for four years, having last played in it prior to relegation at the end of the 2014/2015 campaign. They went out to Walsall on penalties after a 2-2 draw at Prenton Park that season.
Micky Mellon has indicated that he will take the competition seriously, but it will almost certainly be used as an opportunity to give fringe players some much needed game time as well.
Don’t be surprised to see Larnell Cole, Ben Tollitt, Dylan Mottley-Henry, Paul Mullin and Harvey Gilmour given starts, while there could be a debut for striker Franklyn Akammadu. Goalkeeper Shamal George may also be given 90 minutes.
It will of course be dependent on the number of loan players that Mellon opts to use with all clubs limited to a maximum of five in the matchday squad. There are also other selection criteria Mellon must adhere to.
Perhaps most encouragingly, the match may see influential defender Adam Buxton given some minutes as he continues his recovery from a hernia. Bucko was part of the warm-up at Northampton on Saturday and so is thought to be closing in on a return.
The game will kick-off at 7:45pm on Tuesday, but there will be no extra-time if scores are level. With the first three fixtures being part of a group stage, instead if the game is drawn each team will be awarded one point AND a penalty shoot-out will take place after 90 minutes to decide the winner. The winning team will get an additional one point.
There are also some selection rules Tranmere must adhere to. For more information, see our post from yesterday about the Checkatrade Trophy rules.
Admission for tonight’s game is significantly reduced, with adults able to gain entry for just £5 and concessions priced at only £1.
As is now customary for fixtures like this, only the Main Stand and Paddocks will be open.