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Match Reports

REPORT: Coventry City 1-0 Bristol Rovers - The Sky Blues claim back-to-back victories under Robins

25 March 2017

George Thomas on target, as City make it six points from six ahead of the trip to Wembley...

The Sky Blues made it back-to-back victories in League One, defeating Bristol Rovers at the Ricoh Arena.

George Thomas scored the only goal of the game, latching onto a Stuart Beavon pass to fire City to their second win under manager Mark Robins.

A frantic opening to the game saw the away side, backed by a strong travelling support, have the first sight at goal. Rory Gaffney turned superbly before pulling it back towards Billy Bodin, the midfielder shot towards goal but saw his effort blocked and eventually cleared.

The home side looked to respond and had an opportunity from a set piece fifteen minutes into the contest. Jodi Jones stood over it, but Rovers’ keeper Joe Lumley easily saved his whipped effort.

The game burst into life on the 30-minute mark, with both sides having opportunities to open the scoring. Bodin and Stuart Sinclair had shots blocked by firstly Lee Burge, and then a superb goal saving intervention from Farrend Rawson, before City had the chance to counter.

Jodi Jones led the charge, bringing the ball forward 40 yards before finding Stuart Beavon. The striker fed it into the path of the charging Callum Reilly, but through on goal, the midfielder side-footed a glorious chance wide of the far post.

The Sky Blues were seemingly having most of their chances through set pieces, with Jones causing problems drifting into wide positions. Reilly swung it in, with Beavon connecting onto a Jordan Willis knockdown, but his effort was scuffed and easily saved.

It was more of the same in the second half, as City yet again threatened the Rovers goal. George Thomas’ low corner was met by Beavon, whose sweeping effort was saved well, before Kyel Reid and Reilly had efforts blocked.

It was the turn of the away side to then come forward, as Lee Burge produced two fantastic saves to keep it goalless. He tipped over an acrobatic Luke James effort, before an instinctive low save from the following corner denied the visitors the lead.

After a bright spell for the Sky Blues, it was Rovers’ turn to push the home side back. Playing mainly on the counter, Bodin found himself running through the middle. Tracked by Dion Kelly-Evans, the midfielder’s effort fell straight into the grateful arms of Burge.

City responded and had a chance of their own through Jones. A passage of Sky Blues possession led to Reid floating a cross towards the back post. The forward took one touch before blazing it over Lumley’s crossbar in what would be his last action of the afternoon.

Jones’ replacement Ruben Lameiras was immediately involved in the action as the Sky Blues secured the win. He found Beavon, who slipped it through to Thomas. The Welshman took one touch before firing it into the far corner in superb fashion to give City the three points.

Yellow: Lockyer, Leadbitter, Bigirimana.

Attendance: 11,946 (4,069)

Teams

Coventry City: Burge (GK), Rawson, Clarke, Willis (C) (Kelly-Evans 62'), Haynes, G.Thomas, Reilly, Bigirimana, Reid (Stokes 85'), Beavon, J.Jones (Lameiras 75'). 

Subs: Charles-Cook (GK), Turnbull, Stevenson, Vernam. 

Bristol Rovers: Lumley (GK), Brown, Lockyer (C), O.Clarke, Lines, J.Clarke (Leadbitter 45'), Bodin, Sinclair, James, Gaffney (Moore 45'), Burn (Harris 65'). 

Subs: Mildenhall (C), Mansell, Easter, Montano.

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