Venue: Huish Park
Sat 12th Feb 2005, 3pm kick-off.


Scorers: Craig Disley (17, 0-1), Phil Jevons (26, 1-1), Phil Jevons (pen, 56, 2-1), Phil Jevons (64, 3-1), Bartosz Tarachulski (72, 4-1), Richard Walker (88, 4-2)

Attendance: 9,153 (including 1500 Gasheads)

Referee: Andre Marriner (West Midlands)
Assistants: Eric Mackrell (Hampshire); Malcolm West (Cornwall)

Yeovil: Darren Way (73, foul), Terry Skiverton (86, foul)
Bristol Rovers: None

Yeovil Town : (4-4-2)
1. Chris Weale
16. Andy Lindegaard 4. Terry Skiverton 5. Colin Miles 3. Michael Rose
9. Kevin Gall 6. Darren Way 8. Lee Johnson 25. Arron Davies
11. Phil Jevons 18. Bartosz Tarachulski

Subs: 12. Kevin Amankwaah (74, for Lindegaard) 13. Steven Collis (GK) 17. Scott Guyett 22. Kezie Ibe (80, for Tarachulski) 27. Andrejs Stolcers (89, for Gall)

Bristol Rovers :
21. Ryan Clarke 32. Aaron Lescott 5. Christian Edwards 2. Craig Hinton 3. Robbie Ryan 8. James Hunt 4. Paul Trollope 7. Stuart Campbell 20. Craig Disley 9. Junior Agogo 17. Richard Walker

Subs: 11. Jamie Forrester 16. Ryan Williams (67, for Edwards) 26. Lewis Haldane (87, for Campbell) 34. Chris Lines 35. Scott Sinclair

Badger’s View of the Game

After all of the pre-match hype and the hot air coming from Bristol Rovers manager Ian ‘Fruitcake’ Atkins, it was a relief to finally get down to the bit that mattered – the 22 players on the pitch. Glovers manager Gary Johnson made a number of changes from last week’s side that lost 3-1 at Macclesfield, with Michael Rose coming in at left-back, Colin Miles slotting in along side him at centre-back, and least surprisingly of all, Bartosz Tarachulski coming in as a striker. Arron Davies kept his place by shuffling to a left-wing position at the expense of Andrejs Stolcers, whilst Andy Lindegaard switched full-back positions, ousting Kevin Amankwaah. Finally Scott Guyett was dropped to the bench.

Rovers turned up without El Fruitcake himself, apparently suffering from a mystery illness, despite having been apparently well enough to fill the week’s newspapers with bile about his opponents methods of winning football matches. Dave Savage and Steve Elliott were also missing from the Rovers side meaning that the three most controversial figures in the Memorial Stadium bloodbath all failed to show for the return fixture, and perhaps it was this which ensured that the game took place in sporting circumstances, with Rovers assistant Kevan Broadhurst taking charge for the day.

Yeovil started the game with a blustery cross-field wind at their backs, which ultimately veered around during the first half to eventually turn against them. Whilst they enjoyed plenty of possession, the final ball through to the strikers was severely lacking as they misjudged the elements, with numerous moves ending in goal kicks, or in cross-field passes going out of play for throw-ins.

Rovers weren’t exactly setting the world alight, but they seemed a little more comfortable with the wind against them, and attacking the Westland end, Craig Disley got their first chance 12 minutes in by lobbing a ball over the bar. But five minutes later Craig DISLEY was the main initiator and finisher of the opening goal. The right winger demonstrated that when Rovers choose to keep the ball on the deck, they can play attractive football. A one-two up the right flank saw the ball return to Disley and the Yeovil defence were a little sluggish in closing down the move, allowing Disley to fire his shot into the corner of Chris Weale’s goal. 1-0 to the away side and not quite the start the majority had hoped for.

The joy of the visiting supporters was distinctly short-lived though. Just nine minutes later, they were silenced by a Yeovil equaliser of stunning proportions. A Michael Rose throw-in was chested down by Bartosz Tarachulski and despite the close attention of two Rovers defenders, he held the ball up long enough to tee up Phil JEVONS who crashed in a 25 yard volley into the top right hand corner, clipping the woodwork on it’s way. In the swirling wind, goalkeeper Ryan Clarke never stood a ghost of a chance.

The goal lifted Huish Park, and Rovers were pushed onto the back-foot as the Glovers began to dominate proceedings. Jevons was fed through by Tarachulski after an excellent run by the Pole, and as Jevons shot from the edge of the area, Ryan Clarke could only parry, and he knew little of Lee Johnson’s follow-up on the rebound as he got part of his body on the shot and then nearly lost the ball as it squirmed under him. This time he was to be lucky.

Kevin Gall fired one just over the bar after squeezing past his left-back marker, and the Glovers ended the half well on top, with the majority of the play now firmly camped in one half.

Half-time: Yeovil Town 1 Bristol Rovers 1

No need for any great shake-up from Gary Johnson at half time and as his team attacked the Westland End, the crowd seemed to lift them that notch higher. Andy Lindegaard put in a right wing cross, that was turned back across the face of the area by Arron Davies, with the ball falling inches behind an incoming Phil Jevons with the goal gaping.

But just 11 minutes into the second period, Yeovil’s comeback was complete. Bartosz Tarachulski beat visiting goalkeeper Ryan Clarke for an aerial ball and as the loose ball spilled behind Clarke, defender Christian Edwards had a blind spot of panic as he slipped and seeing an incoming Darren Way, clutched the ball away from the Yeovil midfielder for an obvious penalty, with Edwards lucky to escape any sort of card.

Up stepped the ever reliable Phil JEVONS from the penalty spot after an age of waiting and numerous fun and games from the Rovers players seeking to delay the kick, but Clarke was sent the wrong way, and the Glovers now had the lead.

As with many a game at Huish Park, once the Glovers get the lead, particularly if they are attacking the home end, they are very inclined to run riot. Eight minutes later, it was 3-1. The Rovers defence were left all at sea on Yeovil’s right wing as Andy Lindegaard was able to run the full length of the flank and put in a deep flighted cross to the back post. With the ball almost heading directly for the goal, Phil JEVONS didn’t take any chances and headed the ball home from a yard out, with Clarke nowhere.

Colin Miles took the ball beautifully off the boot of Junior Agogo as Rovers sought to get back into the game, but this was never going to be the Rovers striker’s day, with Miles and Skiverton nullifying anything he attempted to create. Yeovil even managed to extend their lead further with the Rovers defence all over the place by now. Arron Davies looped in a left wing cross and with Rovers failing to deal with Bartosz TARACHULSKI all afternoon, the big Pole was able to almost casually nod in Yeovil’s fourth of the afternoon. This was in danger of turning into another massacre.

With the game now won, Gary Johnson made a series of substitutions with Andy Lindegaard replaced by Kevin Amankwaah and Bartosz Tarachulski making way for Kezie Ibe. Those moves seemed to lose the Glovers a bit of momentum, and they were seemingly content to sit back on the ball. Terry Skiverton caused amusement for the Huish Park crowd as he upended Junior Agogo in spectacular fashion with the only bad foul of the afternoon. All credit to referee Andre Marriner and the 22 players for ensuring that the game did not become the nasty affair that El Fruitcake’s pre-match comments could have provoked.

Rovers pulled back a consolation with two minutes left after James Hunt fed Richard WALKER who managed to swivel, turn and shoot from eight yards out to bring it back to 4-2 for a goal that will have disappointed Yeovil’s defence. The Glovers were a little sloppy in these closing minutes, and Hunt could have set up an improbable finale as he fired across the face of the box. But that was as close as they got and on the final whistle the Rovers fans streamed out as the remaining three sides of the ground stayed to applaud their heroes. Rovers look a little more organised than they did last season, and definitely more motivated, but the end result was the same and on this performance Rovers will certainly be part of League Two’s line-up for next season. But with Swansea having lost 3-1 at Leyton Orient, the most important thing was that the Glovers had returned to the top of the league after their brief 24 hour spell in second place. A few more performances like todays and any worries about the Glovers stuttering post-Charlton should be firmly put out of people’s minds.


MOTM Vote Result:

Player MOTM Score
Phil Jevons 53 772
Bartosz Tarachulski 39 594
Andy Lindegaard 2 102
Colin Miles 2 86
Arron Davies 1 68
Kevin Gall 1 64
Terry Skiverton 1 36

Overall match rating: 8.5 / 10
Performance: 8.1
Entertainment: 8.9

100 votes received.

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