Match Details: 19/08/2017
Forest Green Rovers 4-3 Yeovil Town
EFL League Two
Yeovil Goals: Olufela Olomola (9), Otis Khan (14), Francois Zoko (35)
Yeovil Line-Up: 1. Artur Krysiak, 3. Nathan Smith, 5. Bevis Mugabi, 7. Otis Khan, 8. Connor Smith, 11. Ryan Dickson, 13. Francois Zoko, 16. James Bailey, 17. Omar Sowunmi, 23. Tom James, 24. Olufela Olomola,
Subs: 6. Keston Davies, 9. Rhys Browne, 10. Jake Gray, 12. Jonny Maddison, 14. Sam Surridge, 15. Jordan Green, 30. Alefe Santos
Substitutes Used: Rhys Browne for Omar Sowunmi (55 mins), Sam Surridge for Olufela Olomola (67 mins), Jordan Green for Connor Smith (84 mins)
Bookings: Tom James (Handball, 69)
Yeovil Town threw away a two goal lead that they held twice against Forest Green Rovers, to lose 4-3 at the New Lawn this afternoon. The Glovers held a 3-1 advantage at one stage during the game, with Southampton loanee Olufela Olomola scoring from close range, whilst Otis Khan added an early penalty. A Christian Doidge header looked to be a brief respite for the home side, when Francois Zoko headed home his third goal of the season. But things began to fall apart during first half injury time. Reece Brown's free kick gave Rovers home hope at the break, and they took control in the second period as goalkeeping errors allowed Charlie Cooper and Omar Bugiel to win the match. Yeovil have now conceded 16 goals in their first three league matches, with them shooting themselves in the foot far too frequently during the afternoon.
The Glovers went into the match changing their formation for the fourth game in a row. Out went Rhys Browne as a winger and in came Tom James as a defender, meaning that the outcome was the formation that was used at Wolverhampton Wanderers - either a 3-4-3 or a 5-4-1 depending on high up the field the four wide players were intended to be. With Bevis Mugabi one of those wide players and Dan Alfei not even making the eighteen, this looked to be a case of Yeovil trying to solidify at the back.
Although Forest Green started off showing some nice intricate passing skills, it was the visitors that grabbed the lead with two early goals. Francois Zoko's ninth minute shot was palmed out by Forest Green keeper Bradley Collins, straight into the path of Olufela Olomola and he gratefully shot home the rebound from 10 yards out.
Things got even better on 14 minutes when Otis Khan cut in from the left flank. Moving the ball onto his right foot and cutting across the defenders, a bit of a daft challenge by Charlie Cooper gave Yeovil a penalty. Despite Khan having already missed a spot kick at Luton two weeks ago, Khan was the man who stepped up and converted from the spot for a 0-2 lead.
Yeovil's defence didn't look particularly confident, even when they had those goals to their name, and midway through the first half, Forest Green pulled a goal back. Dale Bennett, who had a 10 minute loan spell for Yeovil during the 2012-13 season, has become a mainstay of Forest Green's first team, and it was his cross that gave Christian Doidge an easy training ground header for a 1-2 scoreline, with the Glovers defence having badly misjudged the flight of the cross.
The game was open - far too open. Liam Noble and Luke James had chances for the home side, and either team could have scored during an open period. But it was Yeovil who struck gold with just 38 minutes gone. A left wing cross from Otis Khan was well flighted to the back post and Francois Zoko was able to head home from close range for a 1-3 lead.
In the lead-up to the half time whistle, Yeovil could have closed the game out and slowed the tempo down. But instead the level of open play was to an extreme. Reece Brown fired a terrific shot off the inside of the post, with the ball eventually deflecting out for a corner. But in first half injury time, the same player got a second chance, which he took from a free kick, awarded for a handball just outside the box by James Bailey. Brown stepped up and fired the ball home around the wall, for what would be a crucial goal in the final kick of the half. At 2-3, Forest Green now had a bit of hope.
Four minutes into the second period, and with the home crowd fired up, Rovers got an equaliser through a goalkeeping error. Charlie Cooper - son of Forest Green's manager - fired a speculative long range shot that went through a Yeovil defender's legs on its way towards goal. Even allowing for only being partially sighted, Artur Krysiak should have done better, as the ball slipped through his hands for a 3-3 score.
Darren Way made a substitution, switching Rhys Brown for Omar Sowunmi, and thus being able to turn the line-up back into a 4-4-2. But in truth, Forest Green looked the more dangerous side during the second half, with Yeovil now having to rely on a policy of counter-attacking, rather than their more frequent forward play they'd shown in the first half. They did have chances, with Rhys Browne having the pick of the two - one that Ryan Dickson set up for him on a breakaway, but keeper Collins parried away. Within a minute he had another shot blocked.
But Forest Green were to win the match through another defensive error. Tom James headed the ball up in the air, rather than away from his penalty box, and Artur Krysiak came off his line to try to claim it. Substitute Omar Bugiel was easily first to the ball and headed the ball past Krysiak with it gently bouncing into a completely unguarded net. From 1-3 up, to 4-3 down, this was a calamity of a way to concede.
Six minutes of injury time didn't help Yeovil get a goal back. Poor refereeing during the afternoon from David Webb didn't help either, but the standard of defending overall - from both sides, in fairness - was atrocious throughout the 90 minutes. In theory, with 22 goals from three league fixtures, Yeovil Town fans are being entertained. But with 14 of those goals going in the wrong end, that aspect is currently killing them early on in the season.
Link: 2017-18 Latest League Two Table.
Final Score: Forest Green Rovers 4 Yeovil Town 3.
Scorers: Olufela Olomola (0-1, 9 mins), Otis Khan (0-2, 14 mins), Christian Doidge (1-2, 23 mins), Francois Zoko (1-3, 35 mins), Reece Brown (2-3, 45 mins), Charlie Cooper (3-3, 49 mins), Omar Bugiel (4-3, 79 mins)
Forest Green Rovers:
1 Bradley Collins
2 Dale Bennett 6 Emmanuel Monthe 16 Jack Fitzwater 3 Scott Laird
5 Lee Collins
8 Liam Noble 10 Reece Brown
15 Charlie Cooper
33 Luke James 9 Christian Doidge
7 Keanu Marsh-Brown 11 Omar Bugiel (63 mins for Luke James) 14 Shamir Mullings 17 Daniel Wishart (78 mins for Reece Brown) 18 Callum Evans 20 Alex Iacovitti (46 mins for Jack Fitzwater) 23 Sam Russell
1. Artur Krysiak
5. Bevis Mugabi 23. Tom James 17. Omar Sowunmi 3. Nathan Smith 11. Ryan Dickson
24. Olufela Olomola 16. James Bailey (Capt) 8. Connor Smith 7. Otis Khan
13. Francois Zoko
12. Jonny Maddison 6. Keston Davies 9. Rhys Browne (55 mins for Omar Sowunmi) 10. Jake Gray 14. Sam Surridge (67 mins for Olufela Olomola) 15. Jordan Green (84 mins for Connor Smith) 30. Alefe Santos
Forest Green Rovers Bookings: Emmanuel Monthe (59 mins, throwing ball away), Charlie Cooper (90 mins, foul)
Yeovil Bookings: Tom James (69 mins, handball)
Forest Green Rovers Match Statistics: Possession: 53%; Shots: 17; Shots On Target: 8; Corners: 3; Fouls: 9.
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 47%; Shots: 13; Shots On Target: 5; Corners: 4; Fouls: 15.
Referee: David Webb (County Durham). Assistants: Joe Clark (West Midlands) and Abbas Khan (East Midlands). Fourth Official: Mark Griffiths (West Midlands).
Attendance: 2615 (with 526 Yeovil Town supporters).