Rovers remain top of the league after this afternoon's draw against struggling Portsmouth.
Saturday, 16 March 2013 at the Keepmoat Stadium, Doncaster
Npower League 1
DONCASTER ROVERS 1 Portsmouth 1
Referee – Mr T Harrington
Attendance – 7,604 (573 visitors)
A fine but cloudy afternoon welcomed Portsmouth to the Keepmoat Stadium. A win for the Rovers would consolidate their position at the top of the table but Portsmouth desperately need points to have a chance of avoiding relegation. Gary Woods resumed in goal for the Rovers, with Neil Sullivan on the bench. The Rovers defended the South Stand end in the first half.
The Rovers won a free kick on their right in the second minute from which Brown headed wide. But apart from the Rovers winning a corner after five minutes the first twenty minutes were spent in midfield in a fairly even contest. In the 20th minute the Rovers were awarded a free kick on their left for a foul on Spurr. Cotterill placed the ball to the far post where Jones headed wide. Then, at the other end Portsmouth won a corner but this was cleared. In the 26th minute, Cotterill crossed left footed from the right, with the ball going across the face of goal but Paynter just failed to get to it. Two minutes later and Coppinger put Paynter through on goal but his shot hit the oncoming keeper and bounced clear. Straight away the Rovers came again through the middle before passing out to husband on the left. Cutting in he hit a twenty-yarder wide of the far post. Pompey were still active in midfield and on the half hour they attacked down their left and won a corner but they made a mess of what was probably a training routine and the Rovers cleared. Then Butler, with a free kick on the Pompey right, overhit the ball and it went out at the far post. In the 37th minute, a good move down the Rovers right let Cotterill cross low to the near post where BROWN stabbed in. Having established a lead the Rovers took command to the break without any further incident of note.
Half time - Doncaster Rovers 1 Portsmouth 0
The Rovers got the second half underway and attacked but were held. Four minutes in and a corner to the visitors was caught by Woods and cleared. In the 55th minute Walker, for Pompey, tried to catch Woods out by trying his luck from 45 yards but he was well wide of the mark. A couple of minutes later and a corner to Pompey came to nothing. On the hour, husband worked hard to win the ball on the halfway line and having done so set off down the left flank and won a corner. Then, a long throw by Spurr, from the Rovers left, into the Pompey penalty area, was headed on by Jones before coming out to Cotterill. He drilled in a good shot from 20yards that Eastwood could only beat away and Jones, following up, kneed it over the bar. In the 66th minute, Connolly, for Portsmouth, fired high over the bar with a free kick from 25yards. Minutes later Racon fired in a cracker from distance that Woods collected at the second attempt. Then, in the 75th minute, what had been threatening for ten minutes happened. The Rovers didn’t clear their lines and Agyemang, on the Portsmouth right, crossed low to the middle for WALLACE to fire in from close range. Minutes later and Wallace cut in from the right but fired wide of the near post. Then Connolly put wide from 25yards. As time ran down the Rovers got back into the game. A thunderous drive from Furman was pushed round a post by the flying Eastwood and Cotterill, on the Rovers left, shot wide of the far post. The Rovers attacked to the end of four minutes of added time but the referee blew for time with the score at one goal apiece.
Result – Doncaster Rovers 1 (Brown 37) Portsmouth 1 (Wallace 75)
Teams – ROVERS – Gary Woods; Paul Quinn, Jamie McCombe, Rob Jones ©, Tommy Spurr; David Cotterill, James Coppinger, John Lundstram, James Husband, Chris Brown, Billy Paynter
Subs used – Dean Furman for Coppinger 62 mins; Iain Hume for Paynter 79 mins; Andy Griffin for Lundstram 84 mins;
Subs not used – Mark Wilson, Liam Wakefield, Kyle Bennett, Neil Sullivan gk
Portsmouth – Simon Eastwood; Yassin Mouatouakil, Gabor Gyepes, Ricardo Rocha, Dan Butler; Jed Wallace, Liam Walker, Johnny Ertl ©, Therry Racon; David Connolly, Patrick Agyemang
Subs used – John Akinde for Walker 72 mins; Adam Webster for Butler 90 mins;
Subs not used – Shaun Cooper, Sam Sodje, Ashley Harris, Jack Maloney, Phil Smith gk