Tranmere Rovers play their third successive domestic away match this weekend, as they make the long trip down south to Boreham Wood. Micky Mellon’s side need a positive result in this fixture to remain in contention for a chance of winning the Vanarama National League title.
Rovers were fortunate to snatch a point in the reverse fixture back in August, after Andy Cook and Andy Mangan both scored goals in the final ten minutes at Prenton Park.
Bruno Andrade scored the opener on that afternoon, and since then he has had an outstanding season. The 24-year old is The Wood’s top-goalscorer in this domestic campaign, and features as the Tranmere Talk One to Watch for this weekend.
Andrade began his professional career with Queens Park Rangers, having coming through their youth academy as a junior. The 24-year old made his debut for the club when he was only 17, coming on as a late substitute against Preston in a Championship match.
The Portuguese winger made his Premier League debut in August 2011, as Rangers were beaten 2-0 by Wigan. His rise onto the scene brought on comparisons to Ashley Young, though Andrade preferred to liken himself to Cristiano Ronaldo.
In his early years of professional football, Andrade struggled to make his mark with QPR and found himself loaned out to lower-tiered clubs on several occasions.
His first spell came with Aldershot, where he made two appearances over a month in 2011. He returned to Queen’s Park Rangers following that, and over a year later he was shipped out to Wycombe Wanderers.
Andrade went on an initial one-month loan, which was extended to the end of the 2012-13 season. He made 26 appearances, and scored twice.
His final set of spells away from the club were spent with Stevenage across two separate periods, in which he scored a solitary goal from 29 total appearances.
Going into the 2015-16 season, Andrade was without a club following his release from QPR and it was Woking who decided to take the plunge on the player. In his one and only season at the club he played regular football and scored 5 times from 43 domestic appearances.
In May 2016, the player opted against signing a new deal with Woking in order to sign with Vanarama National League rivals, Boreham Wood. Looking at the 2016-17 campaign, Andrade played 36 times and scored 10 goals.
The 24-year old has been a pivotal figure in Boreham Wood’s rise in this 2017-18 season, and now finds himself up there at the top in terms of goals scored within the division.
Andrade’s 16-goals is third only to Danny Rowe (22), and none other than Tranmere’s own Andy Cook (17)! Boreham Wood finished in 11th place last season, where as in this campaign they largely have the Portuguese speedster to thank for currently sitting in sixth place in the table.
The Wood drew 2-2 to Tranmere back in August at Prenton Park, with Andrade getting on the scoresheet from the penalty spot. His side were unfortunate not to win all three points on the day, and both sides will be fighting for a win this weekend.
Boreham Wood will have been disappointed to have only drawn 1-1 in midweek to Maidenhead United, and manager Luke Garrard will be hoping that Andrade picks his scintilating form back up starting this Saturday.
He has not scored for the club since February 17, and since then the team have struggled to put the ball in the back of the net. The Wood have only scored twice from four matches, and have drawn three games and only won once in that time.
Micky Mellon will be aware of the player, and it will be interesting to see how he sets up his defence in order to try and deny Andrade at Meadow Park this Saturday. The manager has no fresh injury concerns, though it is expected that Liam Ridehalgh could well be his opposite number.