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Kick off 12:30 (UK)

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17 April 2021 Venue Montgomery Waters Meadow Attendance

Kick off 12:30 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

PREVIEW | Shrewsbury Town vs Rovers

16 April 2021

Rovers are on the road in Sky Bet League One this weekend as they take on Shrewsbury Town at Montgomery Waters Meadow.

Andy Butler’s side go in search of a morale boosting victory after a poor run of form in recent weeks. 

Shrewsbury’s recent form 

The Shrews have won two of their past six league games stretching back to a 2-1 victory at Burton Albion on March 23. They then suffered back-to-back defeats against Portsmouth and Northampton Town, before getting back to winning ways  

They went on to earn a draw at Gillingham, before being beaten 4-1 by Oxford United in their last league outing.  

Club News

Shrewsbury Town kick-off moved to 12.30pm

12 April 2021

The man in charge 

Former Cheltenham Town, Burnley and Bristol City manager Steve Cotterill was appointed as the new Shrewsbury boss at the end of November, replacing Sam Ricketts in the role.  

Since he took the job, Cotterill has taken charge of 25 matches, winning 11, drawing seven and losing seven, giving him an overall win percentage of 44%. 

 

Ones to watch 

Oliver Norburn 

After beginning his career with Leicester City, Norburn got his first taste of first-team football during a loan spell with Bristol Rovers which was soon made permanent. The central midfielder joined Shrewsbury in the summer of 2018 from Tranmere Rovers, signing a three-year deal with the club.  

Since then, he has become an integral part of the team and has been linked with moves to a higher division in the past, such is the high level of consistency he has found at Montgomery Waters Meadow. 

 

Shaun Whalley 

The former Accrington Stanley midfielder joined the Shrews from Luton Town in 2015, after helping the Hatters win promotion to the EFL.  

After a difficult first six months at the club, he has gone on to become a fans favourite, with his best season to date being the 2017/18 campaign – where the winger bagged 12 goals. He has continued to chip in with important goals throughout his time at the club, with eight to his name so far this time around. 

 

Harry Chapman 

A product of the Middlesbrough Academy, Chapman spent time on loan with Sheffield United, Barnsley and Blackburn Rovers before a permanent move to Ewood Park in January 2019. 

The 23-year-old struggled to hold down a regular spot in the side though and had to settle for appearances off the bench, before sealing a loan move to Shrewsbury in January. He has hit the ground running for the Shrews, with seven goals in 18 appearances since his arrival. 

 

Last time out  

Aaron Pierre’s goal eight minutes into the second half was enough to earn all three points for Shrewsbury when the two sides last met at the Keepmoat Stadium in December. 

 

Watch pre-match interviews

 

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Match Reports

REPORT | Shrewsbury Town 0 Rovers 2

17 April 2021

An early goal by Fejiri Okenabirhie and a late goal by Taylor Richards earned Rovers three points on the road on the for the first time since January.

Andy Butler made three changes to the side that were beaten by Burton Albion in midweek. AJ Greaves and Branden Horton dropped to the bench while Omar Bogle missed out through injury. The biggest piece of team news was a start for Butler for the first time since being named manager – this was part of a reshuffle at the back with Joe Wright moving to right back, and Reece James making a return to left back following his completion of the concussion protocols.

Tyeece John-Jules returned to the squad for the first time since picking up an injury at Swindon Town in mid-January and Taylor Richards made his first start since April 5.

There were few chances in the opening exchanges – Rovers worked the ball out to James Coppinger whose drilled ball towards the back post evaded everyone while a couple of ambitious efforts from Shrewsbury – Josh Vela from open play and Harry Chapman from a free kick – were over and then easily saved.

Rovers took the lead after 15 minutes through a piece of good luck. A pass back to a defender looked a safe option for the home side but as he slipped to the ground, Okenabirhie was left one-on-one with keeper Matija Sakic and fired beyond him.

It took a further 15 minutes for either side to register a shot – but like London busses they all came along at once. Another Chapman effort from distance was thwarted by Balcombe and a decent block denied Okenabirhie after the no.9 was picked out by an excellent John Bostock pass.

Nathanael Ogbeta rattled the cross bar from close range, David Davis fired over from the edge of the box and at the other end Coppinger’s thunderbolt effort was spilled by the keeper - some good defending denied Josh Sims a tap-in from the rebound.

Rovers defenders were called on to make a couple of key blocks and there were some anxious looks to the officials when Shrewsbury striker Shaun Whalley went down in the box – but he’d gone down a bit too easily and referee Andy Davies waved the appeals away ensuring Rovers held their lead at the break.

Shrewsbury had the best of the early exchanges in the second half – but Rovers were able to show their strengths on the break. A quick move through the midfield with Bostock, Coppinger and Smith moving the ball from one end of the pitch to the other in three passes. They eventually worked the ball to Richards who couldn’t find the half a yard he needed to get a shot away. Minutes later, they were stringing together a similar move – this time it was Reece James’ cross which was cleared by the home side.

Their best of these chances came just before the hour mark when a Rovers clearance from a Shrewsbury corner-kick was to Sims – the Southampton loanee was always favourite in the footrace creating a one-two with Okenabirhie but the winger slopped at the wrong moment at the Shrews were able to mop up the danger.

An excellent Rovers chance came just after the hour-mark. Substitute Tyreece John-Jules looked to make his return to action a memorable one as he linked up with Bostock on the right and picked out Okenabirhie – the striker pulled his shot a whisker wide of the near post.

With ten minutes left on the clock, Richards was put through on goal by Okenabirhie and the Brighton and Hove Albion hammered the ball beyond Sarkic to secure Butler’s first victory on the road as manager.

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