Rebels fired up but miss target

Bromsgrove Rovers

Bromsgrove Rovers

Slough Town

Slough Town

League Attendance: 687 Mark Fiore
It had to happen eventually - after all, a season's not complete without a no-score draw. But while the goals didn't exactly come thick and fast, the tackles certainly did, and the dismissal of two players — including newly-signed Garry Smart — provided the main talking point in an erratic game.

Both sides may have bcen guilty of trying a little too hard to please, for while the contest was far from an average mid table end-of-season affair, it was marred by over-exuberence.

Bromsgrove picked up the first red card on 65 minutes, when the dangerous Caner struck a post, Ben Miles went down to block the follow-up and as the ball spun up into the air, Skelding clearly swung an elbow into Steve Bateman's face. He was rightly dismissed, but the score was evened in the final minute when Smart, a Rebel just a week, wrestled Carter to the ground in a clear scoring position and saw red himself.

It spoiled a competitive battle that might on another day have seen several balls being picked out of the back of the net. Miles at the Slough end was once again the man responsible for one half of the scoreline, and is now already arguably the league's best 'keeper.
He faced the onslaught early. Crisp's half-volley would have beaten most, but was kept out superbly, and there was more to come from the 21 year-old as the game wore on.

Meanwhile, Mark West tried one from a similar angle when an Andy Clement free-kick winged its way all of 50 yards to the back post but his effort missed by inches, and a thundering Mark Fiore strike just lacked the dip neccessary to take it into the net.
The Rebels suffered mainly from poor delivery, for while the introduction of youngster Robert Smith and the experieneed Smart as attacking full-backs freed Fiore and Andy Gray to join the attack, they could not replace the crosses the pair provided and left most of the action coming through the middle.

That was where they should have taken the lead just before the break, as Fiore suddenly burst into life and drove his way past two defenders and into a great one-on-one position with Taylor. But he opted to shoot rather than round the 'keeper, and missed the target.

Miles stopped from Crisp again in the second half, after White had stolen the ball from Cliff Hercules and raced up the byline, but was beaten by Marlowe's direct corner which needed Clement to keep it out on the line.

When they did face 10 men, the visitors failed to milk the situation as they might have. Clement himself was lucky to stay on the pitch when the ball smacked into his hand as Caner charged through, and Rovers probably had the best of the rest when Smith gave Miles a fright with a header.

But a point away from home and three at Wexham Park will secure the top 10 place Brian McDermott demands - and the larger squad he has created means Smart's suspension will be coped with. The worrying seems to be over this season.

Bromsgrove Rovers Lineup


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