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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

09 December 2023 Venue Wham Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Reports

REPORT | Accrington Stanley 0 Rovers 0

9 December 2023

Rovers battled out their first away draw of the campaign as horrendous conditions played their part in a goalless clash with Accrington Stanley.

Both chances and sustained possession proved hard to come by for each side as howling winds and driving rain took their toll on proceedings.

End-to-end wind ensured the ball was either held up in the air or driven forward which made for an unpredictable afternoon at a wet Wham Stadium.

With neither side able to stamp their authority on the game, a stalemate looked the most likely, barring a piece of individual quality or a mistake which never came.

Substitute Harrison Biggins struck the bar with a header in the closest Rovers came to breaking the deadlock, while Owen Bailey made a block on the line to prevent the hosts from edging in front.

Grant McCann made one change to the side that started the FA Cup tie at Peterborough United with Tommy Rowe returning to the XI.

Rovers made a strong start to the game, pressing with real intensity from the first whistle and getting the ball forward quickly to put the hosts on the back foot.

George Broadbent swung in a dangerous cross which Tom Nixon met on the slide, but could only turn his effort wide inside the first two minutes.

Rowe flicked a near post header narrowly over the bar from a Ben Close corner as Rovers continued their impressive start, before the rain set in for the afternoon.

Louis Jones punched a cross away as Accrington began to have a say on the game.

And the Rovers keeper almost put his side ahead when a kick out of his hands cleared the outfield players and bounced over opposite number Joe Walsh before dropping just wide.

Accrington grew into the game and finished the first half the stronger. Former Rovers loanee Josh Andrews lashed home a shot from the edge of the box but play was pulled back after the ball ricocheted into his path off referee Peter Wright.

Mo Faal poked an effort from a corner narrowly wide before Jones came to Rovers’ rescue after Andrews was played in one-on-one, only to fire straight at the keeper.

Shaun Whalley attempted a speculative volley for Accrington early in the second half but dropped the ball wide.

And Bailey made his heroic interception to prevent substitute Josh Woods from firing Accrington in front.

The time between chances only increased as the game wore on. Joe Ironside scuffed a header wide from a Nixon cross while Ben Woods drilled a free kick from distance over the bar at the other end.

Biggins stretched to meet a cross from Jamie Sterry five minutes from time but could only watch his header bounce back off the woodwork in the final real opportunity of the game.

Rovers: Jones, Bailey, Anderson, Olowu, Molyneux (Sterry 82), Broadbent, Close, Rowe (Biggins 61), Nixon (Senior 82), Faal, Ironside. Subs not used: Lawlor, Hurst, Goodman, Flint.

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