Hot on the heels of facing Bradford, Oldham are up against another of their traditional rivals – Tranmere Rovers.
Tranmere are Oldham’s third most common opponents, and tonight is the 89th clash. Oldham have won 35 of the previous 88, Tranmere 32, and there’s been 21 draws. Despite winning more, Oldham have scored fewer – 123 to Tranmere’s 124.
That’s in part because Oldham’s heaviest ever defeat came at the hands of Tranmere in only the second ever clash between the sides, on Boxing Day 1935. That day Tranmere finished 13-4 winners, and yet only a day after Oldham had won 4-1 against the men from the Wirral (yes, on Christmas Day). Tranmere have also won 6-2 (1969) and 4-0 (2005) over the subsequent years.
Those hectic days aside, it’s been a low scoring contest by and large, with 65 of the remaining 84 fixtures featuring each team scoring at most two goals. In the last 14 meetings since 2008 no teams has scored more than twice.
But both teams are in goalscoring form of late, with Tranmere dispatching Grimsby 5-0 and Port Vale 4-3, and Oldham winning 4-3 at Barrow.
That’s contained in the form in the table below:
Ignoring the fact Oldham are 17th not 16th, otherwise the stats slightly favour Tranmere, who are slight favourites to win tonight at 39% by our model, and 37% on average by the bookies.
But neither of these numbers factor in that Oldham have been doing well on Tuesdays nights in recent years. Since 2010, in general they’ve won just 32% of home matches, but when it comes to home matches on a Tuesday night, they’ve won 47%. That’s a significant difference. Who knows why?
It’s not obvious, which is probably why it may not be all that wise to bet on it.