A sweltering summer’s day in the capital set the scene for Rovers’ third league match of the campaign. An unbeaten AFC Wimbledon proved tricky opponents in a game that ultimately felt like a win.
Rovers looked the better side in the first half, with some decent passages of play, but a lack of any real cutting edge. Lee Tomlin’s free-kick effort flashing against the post 30 minutes in was the closest either side came to breaking the deadlock.
The second half brought a change in momentum, and Wimbledon looked much likelier to open the scoring. They did exactly that after 76 minutes, and just eight minutes later the hosts had doubled their lead. Ayoub Assal was afforded far too much time to pick out Nathan Young-Coombes for his second of the match. It was all over from there, right?
Cue a Tommy Rowe thunderbolt two minutes later. Surely this wasn’t going to happen?
With Bobby Faulkner now on and a shift to three at the back, Rovers threw everything forwards – including keeper Jonathan Mitchell. Then, in the fourth minute of added time, Kieran Agard flicked on an Adam Clayton corner; the Rovers’ support drew breath as Ro-Shaun Williams rose, and headed the ball into the back of the net. Absolute pandemonium in the away end.
This really felt like a win. Rovers produced a decent performance, and Gary McSheffrey’s substitutions changed the game. Not everything looked rosy, but the fighting spirit shown by this side is a refreshing sight.