Bristol Rovers 0, Yeovil Town 3: Rovers ship three but show some fight
YEOVIL Town midfielder Edward Upson condemned Bristol Rovers to another Memorial Stadium setback last night by completing a stunning free-kick double to see his side safely into the next round of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy.
Upson curled in direct free-kicks in the 70th and the 86th minutes to ensure victory before Sam Foley rubbed salt into the wound by slipping in a third in injury-time at a time when Yeovil were down to ten-men following the sending off of Jamie McAllister.
Mark McGhee's Rovers side still remain winless this season and are yet to score a goal in front of their home supporters – but the manager at least will be consoled by the fact that his side showed a greater amount of defensive solidity than they did during Saturday's 3-0 defeat at the hands of Morecambe.
Potency in attack remains elusive, however, with Rovers' first and only effort of the evening on target coming off the boot of defender Tom Parkes in the 87th minute – although Rovers did have the ball in the goal on two occasions only for the 'goals' to be ruled out.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
McGhee had resisted the temptation to make wholesale changes before the game – offering most of the players who performed so poorly on Saturday an opportunity to redeem themselves.
Cian Bolger was drafted in at the heart of defence to prompt a re-shuffle in which striker Matt Harrold, who is suffering with a minor hamstring complaint, was the only player from Saturday's reverse to miss out.
Richards moved up front alongside Clarkson, Smith filled in on the right side of midfield and Adam Virgo shuffled across from the centre of defence to play at right-back.
Yeovil boss Gary Johnson, meanwhile, had showed his intention to make progress in the competition by naming the same side that secured a 2-1 victory over Doncaster at Huish Park on Saturday.
It was Rovers that made most of the early-running by carving out a few tame attempts from distance off the boots of Matt Gill and Wayne Brown.
Yeovil started to find a bit of rhythm as the first quarter-of-an-hour drew to a close and almost opened the scoring when defender Luke Ayling glanced the crossbar with a hooked shot from a tight angle following a set-piece.
Lee Brown went close when his swirling free-kick from the right-hand touchline bounced across the face of goal unhindered before creeping wide of the far post.
Clarkson was the next to try his luck with a more centrally-placed free-kick from just outside the penalty area – but his effort flew harmlessly over the crossbar before Michael Smith had a 'goal' ruled out after Matt Gill was found to have fouled goalkeeper Marek Stech in the scramble before the ball was converted.
Rovers then had the ball in the goal straight after the sides returned for the second-half – but Clarkson's header from close-range was chalked off because the striker was in an offside position when the ball was sent back into the penalty area after Yeovil had initially cleared a Lee Brown corner.
Johnson moved to try to spark life in to his lethargic side by making a change up front that saw the ineffectual James Hayter replaced by from Reading youngster Gozie Ugwu.
In a game that had looked unlikely to spawn a goal from open play, it came as no surprise when the deadlock was broken courtesy of a delicious piece of individual skill from a set-piece in the 70th minute.
Yeovil midfielder Edward Upson was the provider with a deliciously curled free-kick from the edge of the penalty area which sailed over the wall into the corner of the net.
Johnson's hopes of securing comfortable passage into the next round, however, were put in jeopardy six minutes later when Jamie McAllister was sent off for his part in an off-the-ball incident with Clarkson. It was ten-man Yeovil that still made progress following another strike from Upson before Foley's injury-time finish.