League two previews: Stevenage

Jun 3, 2021 | News

We have met Stevenage just three times, twice in the league and once in the Football League Trophy, and have yet to beat them.

The only two league meetings came in 2015/16 when they registered a 2-1 win at the Memorial Stadium on 24th November 2015 and the return game at their place on 19th April 2016 ended goalless.

The Trophy meeting, at The Mem in January 2020, saw Stevenage win 1-0 in front of a crowd of just 1,180.

Stevenage have been a Football league side since 2010. Formed in 1976, as Stevenage Borough they gained promotion to the Conference in 1994. They won that league two seasons later, but promotion to the Football league was denied due to inadequate facilities at their Broadhall Way ground.

It wasn’t until 2010 that they won the Conference title again and on this occasion they were promoted to the Football League and that’s when ‘Borough’ was dropped from their name. They were promoted again the following season, to League One via the play offs.


(photo coutesy of JMP)

They were relegated back to League Two at the end of the 2013/14 season and have remained at that level ever since, finishing in 14th place last season with 60 points. Their home record at what is now known as the Lamex Stadium, saw them win eight games, draw eight and lose seven.

Like Rovers, they were Wembley winners in 2007 when they clinched the FA Trophy by beating Kidderminster Harriers 3-2 in front of a crowd of 53,262.

Players who have turned out for both clubs include Chris Lines and Joe Martin, who were both on Stevenage’s books last season. Lines appeared in 21 games after joining them, on loan, from Northampton in January this year.

Chris Beardsley has also played for both clubs, as have Andy Bond, Barry Hayles, Peter Hartley, Giuliano Grazioli, Dwayne Plummer, Rob Quinn, Justin Richards, Dave Martin, Jefferson Louis, David Lee, Simon Stapleton, Ed Upson and Callum Willock.

Paris Cowan-Hall is the only player to have made his Rovers league debut against Stevenage, and that was in the aforementioned game at The Mem in November 2015.

(photo courtesy of Neil Brookman)

On our only appearance at the Lamex, in the run up to our promotion to League One in 2016, the crowd of 3,836 included 1,300 Gasheads so I’m sure there will be a few making their first visit to the ground to see the Gas in action next season.

The Lamex, which has a capacity of 7,800 is situated 143 miles from the Memorial Stadium.