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Rovers 2 Luton Town 1

8 September 2018

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Ben Whiteman's first goal since New Year's Day sealed three points for Rovers after seeing off a determined Luton Town side at the Keepmoat Stadium.

Whiteman's winner came just 35 seconds after the break, putting the hosts back in front following Elliot Lee's injury-time strike in the first half, which itself had come after Matty Blair put Rovers ahead inside six minutes.

Rovers started off brightly and after six minutes of control from the hosts, took the lead with a superb bit of individual play from Blair.

The midfielder picked the ball up and sliced the Hatters' defence in half, opening up space to curl into the top corner with his weaker left foot to put Rovers 1-0 up with just six minutes on the clock.

The Hatters came back into the game not long afterwards, with Lee doing well to turn his marker and shoot on goal, only to find Andy Butler in his way before the Rovers defence were able to clear their lines.

Rovers searched for more though and almost doubled their lead three minutes later, with John Marquis creating space for James Coppinger to scissor-kick towards goal, however this time James Shea in the Luton net gratefully collected the ball.

James Collins would be next to try his look, hoping to catch Marko Marosi out and curl into the far corner, only to see the Slovakian claim his somewhat ambitious attempt on goal.

Marosi would have to be at full stretch half way through the first period, with Herbie Kane gifting the Hatters a free-kick 25 yards out from goal, with Jorge Grant stood over the set-piece.

The man on loan at the Hatters from Nottingham Forest curled the ball over the wall, but Marosi got down superbly to deny the midfielder an equaliser.

Luton would be rewarded for pressure of their own though on the stroke of half-time, with a corner being Rovers undoing, as Lee was left to nod in unmarked at the back post in added on time.

This wouldn't set Rovers back after the break however, and just 35 seconds after the interval they would be back in front.

The ball was swung over by Danny Andrew from the left, with Blair knocking the ball down for Whiteman, and he smashed the ball into the net through the Hatters' defence to put Rovers in control once more.

Rovers would then have two great chances in the space of a couple minutes to extend their lead, firstly after good work between loan pair Herbie Kane and Mallik Wilks, with the latter curling just wide of the post.

Andrew would be next to go close, cutting inside onto his right foot on the angle of the penalty area, only to see his effort also go narrowly past the far post.

Coppinger almost doubled the lead following good work between himself, Marquis and substitute Alfie May, squeezing a shot just wide of Shea's left post.

Glen Rea almost gave Rovers another injury-time shock as he found the side-netting following a Hatters' corner, however the hosts held on to claim their first win in five games.

Rovers now travel to Walsall next Saturday in Sky Bet League One as they look to maintain their recent unbeaten run.


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