Rovers face a recurrent bogey side in the form of Yeovil Town this Saturday at Keepmoat Stadium
Rovers will have to return to winning form the hard way this weekend against a Yeovil side currently enjoying the best run in the division. If history is anything to go by the fixture also presents a very bleak outlook for Rovers. Yeovil have won the lion’s share of previous games between the two sides including an all conquering record in away ties where Rovers have won just once in 10 games at home.
The last meeting came back in September at Huish Park with Yeovil taking home all three points as part of their best ever start to a season for the club; taking 10 points from the opening 4 games. Billy Paynter’s late strike proved to be only a consolation for Rovers who were 2-0 down after second half goals from former Rovers striker James Hayter and Gozie Ugwu.
Despite dropping to third in the table with a draw away at Crawley Town on Monday night, Rovers fate is still very much in their own hands. After an unbeaten January, Rovers are winless in the month of February so far including two draws in the last two in a slight dip in form. Two points now separate first and sixth in the table with seventh place Brentford only four points behind Swindon in first and two behind Tranmere in sixth.
Unusually for a team chasing automatic promotion, home form has been indifferent this season at the Keepmoat with more away wins in the league then home wins. Now twelfth in the table in terms of home record; the task ahead for Brian Flynn’s squad is to make the Keepmoat more of a fortress for the rest of the season. Mixed results of late and three of the last seven home games still to come against current play off sides emphasizes this point although every game will be vital for Rovers promotion push home or away.
Yeovil are very much in unchartered waters this season having finished 14th or lower in the last five seasons in League One. Winning nine of the last ten league games in a run going back to 29th December has jettisoned the Glovers up the table into the playoff picture and not many people would bet against them slipping too far with a goal for record that is 2nd in the league and produces almost 2 goals a game.
The game is likely to be one of Brian Flynn’s “high energy, high octane affairs” and Rovers will need to keep a 28 goal duo of Paddy Madden and James Hayter quiet while taking any chances that come at the other end in what promises to be an important game in the end of season run in for both sides.
21 games in total have been played since the 1998/99 season in a fairly recent history of firstly conference ties up until the 2003/04 when both clubs played in division three of the football league for the first time. Since 2003 Rovers have only recorded a single victory in ten games giving Yeovil the firm title of bogey team and perennial thorn in the side. The overall record in games involving the clubs is three Rovers wins in 21 games and 5 draws.
Arguably the most memorable tie between the sides came in 2002 with a 5-4 victory to Yeovil in an FA Cup fourth round replay. The game was not memorable for Rovers fans however, as Rovers lead 3-0 before going down 4-3. The game saw two more turns with an 88th minute equaliser only to be undone by a Terry Skiverton winner on 89 minutes to cap an enthralling game.
In 2004 Yeovil Town produced a top 40 single named “Yeovil True”. The debut single entered at 36 after selling 3,500 copies in 3 days upon its release and placed higher than Pink and The Strokes in the chart.
Last Meeting – League – 01/09/2012
Doncaster Rovers – 1 (Paynter 90 +3 mins)
Yeovil Town – 2 (Hayter 56 mins, Ugwu 84 mins)
Rovers – Gary Woods, Paul Quinn, Jamie McCombe, Rob Jones, Tommy Spurr, David Cotterill, David Syers, Martin Woods, Kyle Bennett, Billy Paynter, Chris Brown.
(Subs) - James Harper (Brown 60 mins), Ian Hume (Bennett 61 mins), James Husband (M Woods 84 mins, Shelton Martis, Robbie Blake, Paul Keegan, Neil Sullivan.
Yeovil Town – Marek Stech, Luke Ayling, Richard Hinds, Byron Webster, Jamie McAllister, Keanu Marsh-Brown, Dominic Blizzard, Edward Upson, Sam Foley, James Hayter, Reuben Reid.
(Subs) – Lewis Young (Marsh-Brown 72 mins, Gozie Ugwu (Hayter 79 mins), Gareth Stewart, Nathan Ralph, Rohan Ince, Archange Nkumu.
Iain Hume, David Syers and Paul Keegan are available for selection after injury, whilst new signings John Lundstram and Cameron Howieson go straight into the matchday squad.
Martin Woods will be missing for 4 weeks after suffering a muscle tear.
Cold, cloudy weather and the occasional light wintry shower expected. A slight covering of snow is possible in places. Brisk, cold winds
Delays at the Lakeside Shopping Village roundabout due to ongoing roadworks. Access to the stadium via the Middlebank roundabout.
Live and exclusive coverage of Doncaster Rovers v Yeovil Town at Keepmoat Stadium on Saturday 22nd February 2013 will be available on Rovers Player from 2.45pm. Contact the commentary team via our official Twitter feed @drfc_official throughout the afternoon.