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Match Reports

REPORT | Rovers 2 Salford City 1

20 August 2022

Match Reports

REPORT | Rovers 2 Salford City 1

20 August 2022

Kyle Hurst scored his first two goals in senior football to help Rovers to a brilliant comeback to beat Salford City.

The wide man grabbed a superb double to turn the game on its head after Brandon Asante gave the visitors to the Eco-Power Stadium an early lead.

It proved to be a difficult afternoon for Rovers with three defenders forced off the pitch injured.

But the remarkable spirit which has characterised the start to this campaign continued to flourish as they fought back for an impressive victory which sees them remain unbeaten this term.

Gary McSheffrey kept faith with the same starting XI from the win over Stockport County in midweek.

Salford started the quicker of the two sides, springing forward quickly from half way.

Luke Bolton surged down the right before firing a shot from the corner of the box which Jonathan Mitchell pushed away well. And there was a moment of panic from the subsequent corner as the ball bounced through the six yard box, only for Asante to flick a shot well over the bar.

The visitors did take the lead ten minutes in. Callum Hendry found space to run into on the right and curled in a cross which Asante tapped home from close range.

Rovers were hit with a double injury blow, forcing two changes inside the first quarter of the game. Tom Anderson and Kyle Knoyle both suffered injuries - the latter of which enforced a switch to a back three, including substitutes Adam Long and Bobby Faulkner.

Salford almost took advantage of the early stages of the formation switch for Rovers as Asante pounced on a loose ball and charged forward, before drilling narrowly wide from the corner of the box.

Rovers began to find their feet from the midpoint of the half. Harrison Biggins flicked on a ball forward and the ball dropped for George Miller, who volleyed on goal only to be flagged offside.

A break from half way ended when Hurst drilled low from the edge of the box, forcing a save from Salford keeper Tom King.

Lee Tomlin was released into the area and drew a good save from King with a curling effort on the angle. The ball was pushed out to Adam Clayton, who struck a brilliant volley that flew narrowly wide.

Hurst struck the sidenetting after skipping into the box as the break approached.

But he did find the equaliser in the first minute of seven added at the end of the first period - netting a real stunner.

He collected the ball from a short corner routine and chipped for the far top corner from 20 yards, watching the ball float over the head of King. 

Faulkner produced a vital block at the near post deep in added time as Hendry lurked for the visitors.

McSheffrey sent on Luke Molyneux at the break, before another change was forced when Long picked up an injury, with Kieran Agard replacing him.

It left Rovers with a makeshift back four, featuring Biggins and Rowe as full backs.

Mitchell denied the visitors from close range after Hendry drilled a ball across the box and an effort was poked towards goal.

And it was Rovers who struck next.

The ball was pinched away in the middle of the park and fed to Tomlin, who slid a perfectly weighted pass out to the left for Hurst. The wide man moved inside and lashed a high shot in at the near post.

Molyneux showed danger moments later. He cut in off the right and sent a low curling strike from 20 yards which forced a smart save from King.

At the other end, Ro-Shaun Williams produced a superb double block to twice deny Hendry from close range.

The nerviest moment in the later stages came when Hendry drilled a low ball into the box from out wide, with a deflection taking it onto the post.

Rovers hung on to secure the victory and a third win in five League Two matches.

Rovers: Mitchell, Knoyle (Faulkner 20), Williams, Anderson (Long 13, Agard 56), Maxwell (Molyneux 46), Clayton, Biggins, Hurst, Tomlin, Rowe, Miller. Subs not used: Jones, Andrews, Kuleya.

Salford: King, Lowe, Vassell, Leak (Dackers 90), Bolton, Watt, Watson, Touray, Lund (Simoes 73), Hendry, Asante. Subs not used: Torrance, Smith, Berkoe, Porter, O’Brien.

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