Match Details: 04/10/2016
Bristol Rovers 0-0 Yeovil Town
Checkatrade Trophy Group Stage
Yeovil Line-Up: 3. Nathan Smith, 4. Matthew Dolan, 5. Bevis Mugabi, 6. Alex Lacey, 8. Alex Lawless, 10. Otis Khan, 11. Ryan Dickson, 12. Jonny Maddison, 19. Tahvon Campbell, 23. Ryan Hedges, 28. Ben Whitfield
Subs: 1. Artur Krysiak, 7. Kevin Dawson, 14. Josh Ezewele, 15. Kyle Copp, 17. Omar Sowunmi, 18. Izale McLeod, 20. Joe Lea,
Substitutes Used: Izale McLeod for Ben Whitfield (54 mins), Kevin Dawson for Otis Khan (59 mins)
Bookings: Alex Lawless (Foul, 63), , Kevin Dawson (Ungentlemanly Conduct, 74), Bevis Mugabi (Foul, 90)
Yeovil Town lost on a penalty shoot-out at the Memorial Stadium on Tuesday Night, after themselves and Bristol Rovers ground out a game of few chances in a 0-0 draw. The low key nature of the competition was reflected in the way that both teams approached the game, with the main notable note of the 90 minutes being a red card dished out to Kevin Dawson, who was initially booked for an off the ball incident but was then given a red card for his reaction to that. Despite the man disadvantage the Glovers hung on, but in the penalty shoot out it was Rovers who got the bonus point that EFL Trophy rules allow, with Ryan Hedges being the only one of the ten penalty takers to have his kick saved.
Both sides went into the match making six changes to their starting line-ups. For Yeovil Town that was slighly deceptive, in that two of those changes were to restore the club's front line that had been abandoned on Saturday, with Otis Khan and Ryan Hedges coming back into the eleven. However, with Tom Eaves still being rested following his ankle injury, Tahvon Campbell played the central role. As with the previous EFL Trophy tie, Jonny Maddison replaced Artur Krysiak, whilst Ben Whitfield replaced Kevin Dawson. The other change saw Liam Shephard and Darren Ward given the night off, with Bevis Mugabi coming in as a right-back - a change that saw Nathan Smith move from his left-wing position into a centre-back slot.
The first half needed little in the way of summary. Both sides battled away in midfield, but created painfully little in the way of chances. Cristian Montano had a narrow angle ball across the box that was stopped by Jonny Maddison before it could turn into anything dangerous, whilst Luke James drove a ball into the danger zone that everyone missed. At the other end, Ryan Hedges fired two shots at goalkeeper Kelle Roos, but these were comfortably saved. The Glovers did get the ball into the back of the net, after Roos dropped the ball from a cross, but it was deemed that Nathan Smith had leant on him rather too much when the ball was in the air and the 'goal' was ruled out long before it crossed the line.
Rovers had a penalty appeal turned down when Luke James went down in the box across a challenge from Alex Lawless, but the feeling was that there had been a little bit too much theatrics involved. Neither keeper had a lot to do throughout the half though, and a 0-0 scoreline was undoubtedly a fair one at the break. The measure of how soporific the half had been was when the Fourth Official seemed to belatedly realise that he was meant to raise the electronic board for one additional minute of time, but did so as referee James Adcock blew up, making that signal a rather irrelevant one.
The second period gave both clubs much of the same early on. However, Bristol Rovers had big appeals for a goal when a Cristian Montano shot/cross came off Alex Lacey and headed towards the goal line. Goalkeeper Jonny Maddison clawed the ball back from the line, and despite the protests he seemed to have done enough to convince the linesman that the ball hadn't crossed for a goal. Goal line technology for an EFL Trophy Group match in front of 2,000 spectators probably can't be cost justified.
Yeovil made two substitutions, and a formation change, with Ben Whitfield's replacement by Izale McLeod allowing the Glovers to switch to a 4-4-2 with Otis Khan and Ryan Hedges going into wide midfield roles, as McLeod joined Tahvon Campbell up front. Not long after that, Khan came off, replaced by Kevin Dawson in a like for like swap. Unfortunately, the Irishman's role in the game was to last just fifteen minutes. He was fouled by Cristian Montano, and when he reacted to that by pushing the Rovers player in the chest. When he got a yellow card for that, he appeared to give some verbal thoughts to the referee and out came the red card - differing reports exist on whether Dawson was getting a second yellow for dissent, or whether he was getting a straight red for foul language - the Football Association will no doubt enlighten the club, but Dawson will definitely be out for the next EFL Trophy Group match.
Down to ten men, that then meant that Yeovil were under more pressure in the closing stages, particularly given that Rovers top scorer Matty Taylor had come onto the pitch. Taylor got the best chance of the whole evening, saving it for the 90th minute when it would have no doubt won the game. He turned in the box and shot, but goalkeeper Jonny Maddison read it well by getting down low for a superb save.
The quirks of the EFL Trophy meant that we were now set for penalty kicks, and these were of high quality. The only player to error was Ryan Hedges, who took the fourth spot kick of the ten, with his shot being too close to goalkeeper Kelle Roos. Rovers took theirs with extreme confidence, and the end result was that Yeovil were only able to take four of theirs before Christian Montano gave the home side a perfect five-out-of-five and thus a 5-3 win from the shoot out. Rovers take two points from the game, whilst Yeovil take one. That means that all four teams in the group can still qualify on the final match, with Yeovil's trip to play a Reading B side meaning that whoever wins that game will definitely qualify, whilst the losers will need to keep an eye on the Portsmouth vs Bristol Rovers scoreline that night.
Link: 2016-17 Latest EFL Trophy Group Table.
Final Score: Bristol Rovers 0 Yeovil Town 0.
Penalty Shootout: Luke James (1-0, SCORED), Ryan Dickson (1-1, SCORED), Billy Bodin (2-1, SCORED), Ryan Hedges (2-1, SAVED), Matty Taylor (3-1, SCORED), Izale McLeod (3-2, SCORED), Charlie Colkett (4-2, SCORED), Alex Lawless (4-3, SCORED), Cristian Montano (5-3, SCORED).
33. Kelle Roos
2. Daniel Leadbitter 15. James Clarke 6. Peter Hartley 3. Lee Brown
21. Cristian Montano 34. Hiram Boateng 24. Stuart Sinclair 22. Byron Moore
29. Luke James 30. Rory Gaffney
1. Steve Mildenhall 5. Mark McChrystal 7. Lee Mansell 10. Matty Taylor (67 mins for Rory Gaffney) 17. Jermaine Easter 23. Billy Bodin (76 mins for Byron Moore) 35. Charlie Colkett (66 mins for Lee Brown)
12. Jonny Maddison
6. Bevis Mugabi 6. Alex Lacey 3. Nathan Smith 11. Ryan Dickson
28. Ben Whitfield 8. Alex Lawless 4. Matt Dolan
10. Otis Khan 19. Tahvon Campbell 23. Ryan Hedges
Substitutes: 1. Artur Krysiak 7. Kevin Dawson (59 mins for Otis Khan) 17. Omar Sowunmi 18. Izale McLeod (54 mins for Ben Whitfield) 14. Josh Ezewele 20. Joe Lea 15. Kyle Copp
Bristol Rovers Bookings: James Clarke (88 mins, foul), Charlie Colkett (90 mins, off the ball incident).
Yeovil Bookings: Alex Lawless (63 mins, foul), Kevin Dawson (74 mins, retaliation), Bevis Mugabi (90 mins, off the ball incident). Red Card: Kevin Dawson (74 mins, second bookable offence)
Bristol Rovers Match Statistics: Possession: 56%; Shots: 12; Shots On Target: 6; Corners: 5; Fouls: 9.
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 44%; Shots: 5; Shots On Target: 3; Corners: 3; Fouls: 8.
Referee: James Adcock (Nottinghamshire). Assistants: Adam Matthews (Gloucestershire) and Nick Hopton (Derbyshire). Fourth Official: Simon Barrow (Staffordshire).
Attendance: 2,117 (with 130 Yeovil supporters).