Boxing Day, Wednesday, 26th December 2012 at Boundary Park, Oldham
Npower League 1
Oldham Athletic 1 DONCASTER ROVERS 2
Referee – Mr Rob Lewis
Attendance – 4,252 (792 visitors)
After a fine, sunny morning, it began raining an hour or so before the game but the pitch was in good fettle, soft underfoot but well grassed. It is the third meeting between the two clubs in four weeks. The Rovers made one change from their last game against Coventry City, Jamie McCombe coming into the middle of the back line, with Tommy Spurr moving to left back and James Husband dropping to the substitutes bench. Oldham made one change from their side that lost at Yeovil Town last Saturday, Youssouf M’Changama replacing Cristian Montano. The Rovers defended the end where their supporters were housed.
The Rovers set the game in motion and took an early lead in the third minute. Cotterill placed a free kick from the Rovers left to the far post where Paynter stuck a leg out to put the ball against the post and JONES hit the rebound into the net. A few minutes later the home team won a corner on their left, which was met with a diving header by Smith at the far post but he put it wide. In the 8th minute, Bennett had a go from 25yards, the keeper couldn’t hold the ball, which bounced off his chest for a colleague to clear. Another corner to the Latics brought a 30yards shot from Baxter that was spilled on the wet turf by the diving Woods but he collected and cleared at the second attempt. Oldham continued to have the better of the possession and got their reward in the 27th minute when the ball reached M’CHANGAMA in a central position about thirty yards out. A terrific drive into Woods’ top right corner gave the keeper no chance. Past the half hour and a free kick from the home right by Baxter was met by Byrne at the far post bringing a great save from Woods to tip it over the bar and in the 37th minute, Baxter had a strike from 35yards that was just wide. Then the Rovers got their game going and moved up the pitch with some good possession that brought the Rovers their first corner but nothing came from it. As time ran down to the interval Baxter had a low shot from 25yards saved well on the wet grass by Woods diving to his left. The final action of the half was a corner to the home team that M’Voto headed over the bar.
Half Time – Oldham Athletic 1 Doncaster Rovers 1
The rain was still coming down as the home team got the second half underway. The early minutes were evenly played played out before Wabara got in a cross from the home right, which Smith, under challenge, headed wide in the 52nd minute. Then, a good attack by the Rovers brought no reward. Past the hour and a free kick from distance by Baxter for the home team was over the bar. In the 64th minute the ball was returned to Cotterill following his corner kick and his cross to the six yard box produced a tremendous melee as the Rovers tried to force the ball over the line. Eventually Bouzanis dropped on the ball at Paynter’s feet. Three minutes later and Cotterill was played in on goal but was chased down and, although he wanted a penalty, all he got was a corner. The Rovers were playing well this half and the rain had stopped but they just could not find a way through the home defence. Substitutions were made by the Rovers as the last quarter hour came up. The game had evened out as both sides went for a winner and that came in the first minute of added time when Husband cut in from the left only to see Bouzanis, diving to his right, brilliantly push his shot away. Spurr gathered the ball and his cross from the Rovers left was headed in at close range by SYERS. In the dying seconds, following a cross from the home right, Smith and Montano had a chance to equalize but it was spurned. A good second half by the Rovers had brought its reward.
Result – Oldham Athletic 1 (M’Changama 27) Doncaster Rovers 2 (Jones 3 Syers 90+1)
Teams – Dean Bouzanis; Reece Wabara, Cliff Byrne, Jean-Yves M’Voto, Jonathan Grounds; Lee Croft, Dean Furman ©, James Wesolowski, Youssouf M’Changama; Matt Smith, Jose Baxter
Subs used – Cristian Montano for M’Changama 84 mins;
Subs not used – Connor Brown, Daniel Taylor, Kirk Millar, Connor Hughes, Carl Winchester, Alex Cisak gk
Cautions – M’Voto 55 mins;
ROVERS – Gary Woods; Paul Quinn, Jamie McCombe, Rob Jones ©, Tommy Spurr; David Cotterill, Paul Keegan, James Harper, Kyle Bennett; Iain Hume, Billy Paynter
Subs used – David Syers for Keegan 62 mins; Chris Brown for Paynter 74 mins; James Husband for Bennett 83 mins;
Subs not used –Shelton Martis, Robbie Blake, Andy Griffin, Jonathan Maxted gk
Cautions – Keegan 61 mins; Bennett 71 mins; Hume 71 mins;