Walsall 2-1 Doncaster Rovers: 250 word match report

Bescot Stadium, Walsall

Rovers recorded their 23rd league defeat of the 2022-23 season when they lost to Walsall at the Bescot Stadium. Rovers fielded a strange-looking side with several changes from the previous game against Colchester United, and also named only five substitutes. 

There was little action in a goalless first half, although Rovers goalkeeper Louis Jones made smart saves to deny Tom Knowles and Matthew Stevens, while for Rovers Kyle Hurst shot wide when in a promising position.

After the break the home side raised the tempo and took the lead after 57 minutes. Liam Gordon’s cross fell into the path of Conor Wilkinson who scored with a fierce shot. Rovers almost levelled when Jack Degruchy’s cross found Aidan Barlow, but the latter’s weak connection allowed home goalkeeper Jackson Smith to make a save.

Walsall extended their lead on 74 minutes when Stevens set up Isaac Hutchinson to score with a crisp strike, but Rovers finally got onto the scoreboard ten minutes later. A corner was helped on by Hurst and Bobby Faulkner’s powerful drive beat Smith. Rovers pressed for an equaliser without avail and ended with a seventh defeat from the last ten league games.

So ended a dismal season, Rovers finishing in 18th place when a play-off place was the target set by the club’s hierarchy. They are now faced with some hard decisions, because without serious change, Rovers will be heading out of the Football League next term.

by John Coyle

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