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Rovers 0 AFC Wimbledon 0

1 May 2018

Rovers battled to a goalless draw at home to AFC Wimbledon in a game that saw limited opportunities for both sides.

The visitors had the game’s opening opportunity after 10 minutes. Dean Parrett drew a foul out of Rovers skipper Andy Butler, and Callum Kennedy stepped up to take the free-kick on the edge of the area.

The Dons’ full-back struck the ball into the wall, with the ball falling back to the feet of Parrett on the edge of the box, but he could only strike over.

Wimbledon came forward again not long after, as Barry Fuller surged forward and crossed the ball into the area.

Joe Pigott rose highest to meet the ball, however he could only direct his header towards Ian Lawlor who claimed the ball with ease.

Straight from this Rovers went on the attack, with good work down the right between Matty Blair and John Marquis opening up space for Issam Ben Khemis.

The midfielder took a touch before shooting on goal, however his effort from the edge of the box fizzed just over the bar.

The Dons came forward with intent as the first half neared to a close, with Parrett swinging the ball over everybody, but finding Andy Barcham over on the far side.

Barcham laid the ball back for Jon Meades, however his right-footed curler went just wide of Lawlor’s far post, leaving the Rovers defence a little relieved not to have been caught out by his effort from distance.

After the interval, it was the Dons who had the first opportunity, with George Long punting the ball forward looking for Lyle Taylor.

Taylor let the ball bounce before striking on goal, however Niall Mason got a vital touch on the ball to deflect the shot over the crossbar.

Marquis then had the next opportunity to open the scoring, as he headed on goal following a flick on by Tom Anderson, however he could only direct the ball into the arms of Long.

Substitute Rodney Kongolo was next to try his luck as he collected the ball on the right after a through ball from Blair, however he could only fire low past the far post, not troubling Long in the Dons goal.

Blair then had a go himself as he cut inside onto his weaker left-foot, but he couldn’t keep his effort down, shooting well over.

Ben Whiteman then stepped forward with an effort on goal, looking to curl low past Long from 25 yards out, however Long got across to tip past the post and away for a Rovers corner.

Dons’ substitute Kwesi Appiah then had two great chances to hand the visitors the lead as the game ticked on, the first attempt being deflected just over the bar, after hooking Taylor’s ball back over the bar.

That combination almost proved to be Rovers’ undoing not long afterwards, as Jimmy Abdou crossed in, and Taylor flicked on to Appiah.

Appiah hit the ball first time, but with the ball looking destined for the bottom corner, Anderson got in front of the ball to put the ball behind for a corner which was cleared by the Rovers defence.

Despite a late push forward for Rovers, they were unable to conjure up a winner, meaning that both sides had to settle for a point, going into the final weekend of the season, with Rovers hosting Wigan Athletic at the Keepmoat Stadium on Saturday.

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