September 27, 2014
Attendance: 1,202 (367 away)
SOUTHPORT F.C. 0 v 1 BRISTOL ROVERS
SCORER: JAKE GOSLING (13 min)
Southport conceded an early goal for the fourth match in a row and once again it proved costly as they were beaten by Bristol Rovers.
Jake Gosling scored after 13 minutes to consign the Sandgrounders to their fourth straight defeat as they slide to 21st place in the Vanarama Conference.
(Southport Manager, Martin Foyle)
Martin Foyle’s side may have lost, but after three disappointing performances, they can at least take comfort from an improved display which could easily have earned them a share of the points.
Foyle said afterwards that his team need to produce better quality in the final third and, with more of a clinical edge to their play, they would surely have brought their losing run to an end.
(Luke Foster who returned to the side to add some added competitiveness in central defence)
With Clayton McDonald and Luke Foster both returning to the team, Southport changed their shape to include three central defenders and five players across midfield.
To a large extent, it was a formation that worked, providing the Sandgrounders with greater balance and strength in central areas.
The home side saw plenty of the ball in the opening stages although most of their football was played in front of the Rovers defence and they rarely did they threaten to get in behind.
Gosling put the visitors ahead as he smartly exchanged passes with Matty Taylor on the edge of the Southport area after cutting in from the right before sending a powerfully-struck shot in off the underside of the crossbar.
(Southport players during their warm-up before the game.)
Taylor should have increased the visitors’ lead when he placed a free header wide from Gosling’s centre, but Southport grew into the half as it progressed.
An excellent ball from Luke George was diverted away from the head of Richard Brodie by Tom Parkes and the Sandgrounders began the second period with real gusto.
Brodie spurned a golden chance from Scott Kay’s fine cross shortly after the re-start, while Steve Brogan’s shot was headed off the goal-line by Parkes after good approach work from Ross Dyer.
Brogan shot disappointingly over after another good break from Kay and John Marsden sent in an effort that went straight to goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall.
(Jonny Lynch was the outlet ball for Southport for much of the first half.)
A speculative drive substitute Ollie Clarke represented a rare second-half chance for Rovers, but while Southport had the better of the play, they were unable to make it count.
The closest Southport came was when Dom Collins’ 82nd-minuteheader from a Brogan free-kick was touched wide by the finger-tips of keeper Mildenhall, but again the Sandgrounders were unable to repair the damage of an early goal conceded.
(Action from the Southport v. Bristol Rovers match .)
Southport: David Raya Martin, Clayton McDonald (John Marsden 76), Luke Foster, Dom Collins, Matt Challoner, Luke George, Scott Kay (Paul Rutherford 65), Steve Brogan, Jonny Lynch (David Fitzpatrick 65), Richard Brodie, Ross Dyer.
Subs not used: Joe Connor, Paul Smith.
Bristol Rovers: Steve Mildenhall, Tom Lockyer, Neal Trotman, Tom Parkes, Lee Brown, Jake Gosling (Ollie Clarke 56), Stuart Sinclair, Lee Mansell, David Martin (Mark McCrystal 83), Adam Cunnington (Ellis Harrison 61), Matty Taylor.
Subs not used: Will Puddy, Jamie White.
Referee: Robert Jones
(Adapted from the Southport F.C. Official Site with thanks.)