April 15, 2018
Rovers struggle to keep up with the main play-off challengers but that is thanks mainly to a very long injury list that Darrell Clarke refuses to blame for some recent results.
Last Saturday not only brought very tough opposition in the shape of in-form Charlton Athletic but also news that two of Rovers’ long list of injury victims, Joe Partington and Stuart Sinclair, had now been ruled out for the rest of the season. On the plus side Liam Sercombe made a welcome return from injury but that unfortunately lasted only less than half-an-hour and he returned to the benches from where yet another debutant stepped into view. With the club having run out of full/wing-backs the ever dependable Lee Brown had to cover firstly his own left-back position then over to the other side making room for Michael Kelly to make a first start in the quarters for the closing stages.
A small band of us ‘regulars’ who have been avidly following the Under-23 Development squad since its inception at the start of the current campaign have become well-used to Michael’s talents and we were not surprised that he made such an excellent start in a very competitive and hard-fought game that probably ended fairly in a draw. A worthy point indeed for such a depleted squad and testament to the value of the Development team that is already producing some great players for Rovers’ future – Telford, Bola, Mensah and Russe have already come through and I’m sure Cameron Hargreaves will not be long in following Kelly in making his debut.
It’s yet another tough game this afternoon as promotion favourites Blackburn make a rare visit to the ‘Mem’. We were desperately unlucky to lose at Ewood Park earlier in the season with the referee on the day admitting afterwards that he had made a mistake in disallowing us a goal. I’m sure that whoever is available to pull on the quarters today will do their best to put that injustice right so get behind them and let’s just see if there is any chance of creeping into that top six. Up the Pirates