A number of late saves from Crawley’s Jamie Ashdown denies Rovers three points.Doncaster Rovers 0
Crawley Town 0
Keepmoat Stadium, Doncaster
Tuesday 16th September
Sky Bet League One
A fine defensive display from Crawley Town earned the visitors a point at the Keepmoat Stadium and denied Doncaster Rovers their first home win of the season.
Paul Dickov made two changes to the side that travelled to Bristol City last weekend; Jamie McCombe came in for the injured Rob Jones and Nathan Tyson replaced a suspended Harry Forrester.
The home side started brightly, the first shot coming just two minutes in from Richie Wellens on the edge of the area, but he fired wide of Ashdown’s left post.
Kyle Bennett looked lively and showed eagerness to get on the ball. Working hard to chase down the Crawley defence, he picked up the ball and skipped through two defenders getting his shot away. Good defending from the visitors saw the ball deflected behind for a Rovers corner but the home side failed to capitalise.
The signs were promising for Rovers and Paul Dickov’s men enjoyed lots of possession in the first half, but couldn’t find the final product and failed to test Crawley’s Jamie Ashdown.
Rovers had another chance on 40 minutes as Evina broke down the left. He delivered a good ball towards the back post and Rovers were unlucky not to get anyone on the end of it.
It took 41 minutes to get the first shot on target, but Robinson’s tame effort was an easy save for Ashdown.
The referee blew for half time and the sides went in level at 0-0.
Rovers threatened just one minute into the second half. Robinson used his pace to break down the right and fired a low ball in to Tyson, but again the Crawley defence were there to intercept.
There was a handball appeal from almost everybody in the ground as Wellens delivered a cross into the box. It appeared to strike the arm of a Crawley defender but the referee waved away the protests.
On 78 minutes it looked as though Rovers would break the deadlock. Bennett broke free quickly down the left and squared the ball for Coppinger who hit a powerful shot straight at Ashdown, much to his frustration.
John Gregory's side continued to get men behind the ball and made life difficult for Rovers in the final third.
The best chance of the game came in the 90th minute as Wabara played a great ball in to Robinson at the far post. The striker rose high to connect with the ball which was heading for the top corner, but somehow Ashdown tipped it onto the crossbar.
The home side looked determined to find a winner and on 94 minutes they almost did as James Coppinger forced another good save from Ashdown. The rebound fell to Robinson who looked certain to score- he fired low but somehow Ashdown was there again, making a great save low to his left to deny Doncaster Rovers the win.
Crawley ran the clock down and were happy to settle for a point in a game which was dominated by the home side.
Team details -
Rovers: Steer, Wabara, Evina, McCombe, McCullough, Bennett, Coppinger, Keegan, Wellens, Tyson, Robinson.
Subs not used – Marosi, Furman, Wakefield, De Val, Peterson, Askins, Ferguson.
Cautions - Bennett
Crawley: Ashdown, Dickson, Sadler, Leacock, Smith, McLeod (Harrold, 82), Wright (Henderson, 56), Walsh, Keane, Tomlin (Banya, 78), Bawling
Subs not used- Bradley, Young, Edwards, Jensen
Cautions – Leacock, Sadler
Attendance – 5197