Visitors open the floodgates in competitive local friendly.
27th July 2015 (7pm)
Church Street, Armthorpe
Armthorpe Welfare (0)
Doncaster Rovers Development 4 (Pugh 37, 54; Whitehouse 68; Bell 82)
Doncaster Rovers Development team recorded an encouraging 4-0 win in testing conditions against NCEL Premier Division outfit Armthorpe Welfare.
Joe Pugh’s brace was a particular highlight; the livewire youth team forward poaching either side of half time.
First team squad member Billy Whitehouse also registered, as did triallist Anthony Bell.
Chances were at a premium in the opening exchanges with both sides struggling to adapt to a hard and bobbly pitch. Kevin M’Buti had a looping header from Whitehouse’s corner drop just over the bar after just four minutes.
There was no lack of endeavour from the hosts who wanted to put on a show as their respective campaigns draw closer.
Neither ‘keeper was unduly troubled in the opening quarter with the ball failing to fall kindly to strikers at either end and the chances had seemingly dried up along with the day’s earlier rainfall.
Rovers upped the tempo towards half time and centre back Paul McKay – who has been deployed in the centre of midfield by Paul Dickov in friendlies – saw his dipping volley smack the ‘keeper’s left hand post on 37 minutes.
Jones’ men weren’t done there though and, before the half was out, Pugh greeted a ball over the top from Ben Greasley with the touch it merited before showing composure and deftly lobbing the onrushing goalkeeper for a deserved 1-0 lead.
Captain McKay sliced a volley that was slightly behind him over on the stroke of half time.
Half time: Armthorpe Welfare 0-1 Doncaster Rovers Development
Rovers carried on where they left off at the start of the second half and within nine minutes of the restart had doubled their lead. Whitehouse’s whipped free kick from wide on the left flank proved too hot to handle for the Armthorpe ‘keeper who spilled for Pugh to smash home his second of the night.
Former Rovers loanee Ben Muirhead entered the fray in the second half and his delivery caused some problems with Armthorpe’s striker glancing across the face of goal.
They nearly reduced the arrears midway through the second half when Marosi’s crossbar was rattled and thus the game turned in Doncaster’s favour.
Jones’ men held firm despite the trying conditions and several substitutions and went on to register twice more through counter attacks.
An incisive through ball down the Armthorpe left, on 68 minutes, found Whitehouse who raced on to it and kept his cool to slot through the legs of the ‘keeper for 3-0.
Rovers, who had fielded first team hopefuls and youth team regulars, completed the rout in the final minutes when triallist Ball swept home a surging counter-attack, which went from back to front in a matter of seconds.
FULL TIME: Armthorpe Welfare 0-4 Doncaster Rovers Development.
STARTING XI: Marosi; Greasley, Carberry, M'Buti (Fielding, 57), P. McKay; Whitehouse, Bell, Linley (Parkin, 58), Davies, Mandeville, Pugh (Walker, 63).
SUBS: Longbottom, Barker.
Crowd – 282