If the opposition look a little familiar on Saturday, well, there’s good reason for that.

Carlisle United’s visitors Barrow have as many as EIGHT former Blues players in their ranks.

Here we take a look at the Bluebirds’ contingent of ex-United men, some of whom will be involved in this weekend’s clash at Brunton Park.


News and Star: Offrande Zanzala (photo: Richard Parkes)Offrande Zanzala (photo: Richard Parkes)

The striker left Carlisle in the summer in favour for a better deal at Holker Street.

Zanzala had joined United from Crewe in January and went on to score five goals in 22 appearances.

He was offered new terms by the Blues but opted to join the Bluebirds, for whom he has netted five in 17 so far.


News and Star: Paul Farman (photo: Richard Parkes)Paul Farman (photo: Richard Parkes)

Another who made the switch from north to south Cumbria this summer.

Goalkeeper Farman was a mainstay between the posts for United last season, making 45 appearances in all competitions and keeping 14 clean sheets.

His huge kicking ability was also a key attribute under Chris Beech, but like Zanzala he preferred a move to Barrow in the close-season and he has been first-choice under Mark Cooper, making 18 appearances to date.


News and Star: Patrick Brough, right (photo: PA)Patrick Brough, right (photo: PA)

Brough came through the youth ranks at Brunton Park from the age of eight and made his first steps in the professional game with United.

From Silloth, left-sided Brough made 49 appearances before leaving in 2017.

After spells with Morecambe and Falkirk, he joined Barrow in 2019 and after helping them back into the Football League, the 25-year-old is in his third season at Holker Street, and picked up player of the year awards last term.


News and Star: Mark Ellis (photo: David Hollins)Mark Ellis (photo: David Hollins)

Barrow boss Mark Cooper appointed the experienced ex-United defender captain this summer after snapping him up from Tranmere.

Ellis, 33, is familiar figure to Carlisle fans thanks to his time with the club from 2016-18, when he made 72 appearances under Keith Curle.

Loan spells with Forest Green (under Cooper) and Leyton Orient followed, then a permanent switch to Tranmere and a latter loan stint at Notts County before he joined the ex-United continent at Barrow, for whom Ellis has made 15 outings so far.


News and Star: Connor Brown (photo: Barbara Abbott)Connor Brown (photo: Barbara Abbott)

The versatile defender was among the earliest signings made by Keith Curle at Carlisle when he joined on loan from Oldham in the autumn of 2014.

He went on to make nine appearances in a two-month spell before returning to his parent club.

Brown, 30, has since featured for Guiseley and York before becoming a consistent member of Barrow’s squad for the last three-and-a-half years.


News and Star: Mike Jones, left (photo: Richard Parkes)Mike Jones, left (photo: Richard Parkes)

Midfielder Jones was a feature of United’s side from 2016-20 after joining under Curle.

He made 158 appearances, scoring three goals, amid a hard-working and consistent run in a blue shirt.

After being released, Jones joined Barrow, where he has had a luckless time with injury – only returning to first-team action this week after nearly a year out with achilles problems.


News and Star: Tom White (photo: Stuart Walker)Tom White (photo: Stuart Walker)

Newcastle native White was on United’s youth books from 2013-15 and captained the under-18 side.

After being released, he went on to play for Gateshead, where his displays attracted interest – including from Carlisle, who tried to re-sign him in 2019.

White instead joined Blackburn, and after three loan spells – including one at Barrow in 2019/20 – he joined the Bluebirds permanently this summer, and has made 13 outings so far this season.


News and Star: Jamie Devitt (photo: Barbara Abbott)Jamie Devitt (photo: Barbara Abbott)

Another former United star whose progress at Holker Street has been held up by injuries.

Devitt, the midfield man who scored 22 goals in 130 Blues appearances from 2016-19, joined Barrow in January after a spell with Blackpool and loans with Bradford and Newport.

After 17 appearances in their survival battle last term, he has been restricted to just two this term, as he battles to overcome a calf problem.