Walsall finished in 19th spot of League One last season despite winning their last game against MK Dons at Stadium:MK.
This was Rovers first visit to Walsall since New Year’s Day, 2008. Jason Price gave Rovers the lead at the end of the first half before Scott Dann headed home a corner in the 75th minute to draw level.
Match Action – First Half
Billy Paynter and Jamie McCombe made their first appearance for Doncaster Rovers, with David Cotterill, Dave Syers, Rob Jones and Paul Quinn each making their league debuts.
The first piece of action of the game saw Rob Jones booked for an unnecessary challenge within the first 5 minutes. On 5 minutes, Billy Paynter’s shot was fumbled by David Grof into the path of CHRIS BROWN who tapped home from close range.
Both sides had chances from corners following the goal, but failed to find the target.
In the 26th minute, DAVID COTTERILL picked the ball up just inside the Walsall half where he saw the home keeper standing off of his line. Cotterill took a shot which looped over Grof’s head putting Rovers into a 2-0 lead. What a strike!
Rovers continued to dominate the game and almost grabbed a third when Paul Quinn’s early cross was met by Billy Paynter, only for him to see his header scrape the post.
At the break
WALSALL 0-2 ROVERS
Match Action – Second Half
The second half began with the hosts winning 2 corners, yet they failed to put the Rovers defence under any pressure.
It only took 10 minutes of the half for Rovers to find the net again. Chris Brown laid the ball off to KYLE BENNETT who danced along the edge of the area before unleashing a curling shot into the far side of the goal. Another fantastic goal for Rovers.
The game quietened down following the third goal and, although each having chances, neither side managed to alter the scores in any way.
The game finished with Rovers as deserved winners, seeing them move into joint first position with Crawley Town.
How it finished
WALSALL 0-3 ROVERS
vikingsbloggen MOTM – David Cotterill.Referee – Mark Heywood.
Attendance – 4,205 (1,000 away). Match Rating – 9/10. Atmosphere Rating – 9/10.
How they lined up
Quinn Jones McCombe Spurr
BENNETT Woods Syers COTTERILL
And on the bench… Maxted, Blake (Brown – 81), Husband, Harper (Paynter – 61), Coppinger (Bennett – 71).
J. Chambers Holden Butler Purkiss
Featherstone A. Chambers Paterson Hemmings
And on the bench… Walker, Benning, Downing, Jones, Baxendale (Hemmings – 62), Brandy (Paterson – 61), Bowerman (Brandy – 68).