Sheffield United 0 DONCASTER ROVERS 0
Referee – Mr M Haywood
Attendance – 17,926 (1,470 visitors)
A cool evening awaited the Rovers at Bramall Lane for the first ‘derby’ game of the season. The Rovers were unchanged from the win at Colchester United, the only change being on the bench, Jonathan Maxted taking over from Neil Sullivan, who has an injured hand. The Rovers were in an all-white, with a black band round the upper chest, strip.
The United made two changes from Saturday, Marcus Williams and Richard Cresswell replacing Darryl Westlake and John Cofie, who both dropped to the bench.
The Rovers kicked off defending the Bramall Lane end. In the second minute, M Woods picked the ball up to the right of goal and got in a shot for the far post that Howard palmed away, Brown followed up and his shot was again pushed out by Howard and eventually cleared. Then a couple of minutes later and the United got to the other end where Cresswell, on the left, fired over the bar from the angle of the area. General play followed, with the Rovers shading possession until the 18th minute when McMahon, on the United right, put in a shot that was going under the bar until G Woods rose to tip it over the bar. Another corner to the United was swung over to the far post for Blackman to head in but Woods was there to push it away off the top of his head. A good spell for the United but in the 24th minute a good run by Cotterill to the edge of the United area ended with a left foot shot going wide. Past the half hour and a free kick from a central position twenty five yards out by Cotterill was hammered into the wall and cleared upfield for Blackman to race away but the break foundered when his wayward pass went straight to a Rovers player. The match ran down to the break with the home team having the better of the possession but the break came with nobody able to find the net.
Half Time – Sheffield United 0 Doncaster Rovers 0
The home team started the second half on he attack and won a couple of early corners after desperate defending by the Rovers. In the 57th minute a United free kick was well saved by Gary Woods at the foot of the near post. The home team kept up the pressure keeping the Rovers penned in their own half. In the 73rd minute the Rovers broke the shackles, with Woods chipping the ball into the area for McCombe to head down and goalwards giving Howard an easy save. Back came the United keeping Gary Woods busy in the Rovers goal despite some sterling defending by his defenders. Isolated breaks by the Rovers didn’t produce any results but they kept the home team at bay to gain a good away point.
Teams – Sheffield United – Mark Howard; Tony McMahon, Harry Maguire, Neill Collins ©, Matt Hill; Paul Gallagher, Kevin McDonald, Marcus Williams, David McAllister; Nick Blackman, Richard Cresswell
Subs used - Dave Kitson for Cresswell 66 mins; John Cofie for Gallagher
Subs not used – Darryl Westlake, Chris Porter, Shaun Miller, Jordan Chapell, George Long gk
Caution – Williams 90+1 mins;
ROVERS – Gary Woods; Paul Quinn, Jamie McCombe, Rob Jones ©, Tommy Spurr; David Cotterill, David Syers, Paul Keegan, Martin Woods, Kyle Bennett; Chris Brown
Subs used – James Harper for Syers 66 mins; James Husband for Cotterill 85 mins; Robbie Blake for Bennett 88 mins;
Subs not used – Shelton Martis, Iain Hume, Jonathan Maxted gk
Cautions – Brown 54 mins; Jones 65 mins;