Rovers 1-0 Morecambe
By Steve Hood
Bristol Rovers secured their first three points under Darrell Clarke after beating Morecambe 1-0 at the Memorial Stadium.
Neither side looked liked opening the scoring until Kaid Mohamed popped up with a stoppage time header to secure all three points for the home side.
New first team manager Darrell Clarke made three changes to the side that lost at Fleetwood on Tuesday night, with Alefe Santos, Kaid Mohamed and Chris Beardsley being recalled into the starting line-up.
Matt Harrold, Steven Gillespie and captain Tom Parkes all dropped to the bench to accommodate the new managers 442 formation. The captain's armband was handed Mark McChrystal.
Chances were at a premium in the first half where the main talking point was the bloody nose of Alex Kenyon for the visitors.
Supporters had to wait over half an hour for the first chance of the game, which fell to Andrew Fleming. Jamie Devitt went on a twisting and turning run before laying the ball off to Fleming who couldn’t test Mildenhall.
Rovers first bright spark came through Alefe Santos. The gas wide man showed a clean pair of heels to Robbie Threlfall on the edge of the box before firing a tame shot wide as he then fell to the ground.
After being ordered off the field for the second time to deal with his bleeding nose, Alex Kenyon fouled Tom Lockyer on the edge of the area for give Rovers their first chance of the half.
Lee Brown’s delivery was deflected off of a Morecambe player and forced a superb reaction save from Barry Roche in the Shrimps goal before the linesman ruled the whole move off because of Chris
Some great link up play led Rovers to their first real chance of the game as Chris Beardsley knocked the ball down on the edge of the area for Kaid Mohamed.
Mohamed opted to head the ball rather than wait for it to drop and headed into the grateful hands of Roche.
There was an additional seven minutes to the first half due to all of the stoppages and the Shrimps had the final chance of the half as Jamie Devitt’s shot went narrowly wide of Mildenhall’s right hand post with the keeper at full stretch.
Both sides started the second half brighter and the home side were lucky not to be behind after Padraig Amond failed to connect with his header from four yards out.
The ball was whipped in with pace from Tony Diagne but the Morecambe front man was unable to apply the vital touch in front of goal.
Rovers piled on the pressure as Darrell Clarke looked for his first win as boss and the home side almost got lucky following a corner.
Brown’s corner in wasn’t effectively cleared by the Shrimps defence but the arriving Ollie Clarke could only lash his shot against a wall of legs inside the Morecambe area.
Some lovely passing created another chance for Rovers and Kaid Mohamed. Ollie Clarke’s pin point delivery found Clarkson in the area and the Scot passed the ball back to Mohamed who drove his effort well over the cross bar.
It looked as if the game was going to be the second goalless draw in a row at the Memorial Stadium before Kaid Mohamed popped up with a stoppage time winner.
Alefe Santos fed substitute Ellis Harrison down the right and the Welshman delivered a powerful cross into the Shrimps 6 yard box. Mohamed jumped highest and headed past Roche to secure all three points for the home side.
The win today moves Rovers onto 46 points and we are now six points clear of the League Two relegation places. The Gas now travel to Bury on Tuesday night and will be looking to move further away from the relegation zone.
Rovers: Mildenhall, Smith, Woodards, McChrystal, Brown, Mohamed, Lockyer, Clarke, Santos, Clarkson, Beardsley (Harrison).
Subs: Gough (GK), Parkes, Clucas, Harrison, Gillespie, Harding, Keary.
Morecambe: Roche, Wright, Diagne, McCready (Hughes), Threlfall (Ellison), Edwards, Fleming, Kenyon, Devitt, Amond (Redshaw), Sampson.
Subs: Arestidou (GK), Hughes, Redshaw,
Williams, Ellison, Marshall, Mustoe.