To celebrate the historic 2014-15 season, Bristol Rovers’ official matchday coverage partners, Screen Soccer, will be releasing two double-dics souvenir DVDs.
TRUE BLUE: The Road To Wembley 2015 (£16.95) Available to pre-order now,released by early June 2015.
The full story of what we hope will be Bristol Rovers’ only Conference season, from the opener against Grimsby at the Mem in August to the victorious playoff semi-final against Forest Green, which secured Rovers’ golden ticket to Wembley.
The loss of Bristol Rovers’ Football League status after 94 years of unbroken tenure was seen by some as a blow from which the club would never recover. Such cynics reckoned without the shrewd leadership of Darrell Clarke, and the resilience and application of the team he moulded, which has succeeded in giving Gasheads ‘our Rovers back’.
This unmissable double-disc souvenir DVD documents the 2014-15 season, which saw a step into the unchartered waters of Conference football, with league games against part-time teams, participation in the FA Trophy and having to qualify to play in the First Round Proper of the FA Cup. Rovers were now the big fish which every other club wanted to have on a plate. After a grim start, with just one point from nine and calls for the manager’s head, Rovers embraced this new challenge with a strong mentality and redoubtable team spirit not seen at the club for many years.
· See how Rovers embarked on an incredible 20-match unbeaten run away from home, including the playoff at Forest Green: a Conference record and a sequence unequalled in Conference history. Darrell Clarke’s team has also emulated the fewest number of defeats Rovers have ever had in the Football League, when Gerry Francis’ all-conquering side lost just five games all year en route to being crowned third tier champions in 1990.
· Re-live the thrills and spills of 17 home victories which had only previously been achieved in another promotion year, 1953, and twice in the early 1970s.
· You can now see again all the goals from the Mem, including that stunning 7-0 win over Alfreton, which has never been surpassed in Rovers’ Football League history, and many from away games.
· Rovers’ unique army of fans – surely the most loyal in England - also broke records all over the country, including a best ever Conference crowd of 11,085 to watch Rovers romp to victory against Alfreton.
· Enjoy the goalscoring exploits of leading marksmen Matt Taylor, the first Rovers player to score 20 in a season since Rickie Lambert, and Ellis Harrison, with almost 20 more from midfielders Andy Monkhouse and Lee Mansell. And see the difference made by Chris Lines, who truly proved he is ‘one of our own’ by helping to take Rovers’ football to another level.
· Admire the defensive resilience of a team which was so often impregnable, with captain Mark McChrystal and Player of the Year Tom Parkes leading by example.
ROVERS RETURN! (£15.95) Available to pre-order now,released by end May 2015
Every kick of the Conference Playoff Final against Grimsby Town at Wembley, plus post-match interviews with Darrell Clarke, Lee Mansell, Matt Taylor, Ellis Harrison and Tom Lockyer.
Re-live all the drama, torment and ultimate ecstasy as Bristol Rovers made an instant return to the Football League with an unforgettable Wembley victory, with your very own double-disc souvenir DVD.
A record Conference Playoff final crowd of 47,029 witnessed arguably the most important match in the club’s history, as Rovers became the first team to reclaim Football League status at the first attempt for ten years. After two relegations in the previous four seasons, including the most dreaded drop of all, Darrell Clarke completed a remarkable transformation of the club, following the depths of that final day heartache against his hometown club Mansfield Town the previous year. All gone now. All forgotten. Rovers are back where we belong.
The Screen Soccer team liaised with BT Sport to capture their excellent multi-camera coverage of the game, which is complemented by Dave Rogers’ commentary, which occasionally has a partisan flavour. The emotional explosion at the end is something that none of us who were there will ever forget and if you weren’t at Wembley this DVD will be the next best thing.
Disc 1: The full 90 minutes as Rovers and Grimsby stood toe-to-toe in an engrossing final, between two teams steeped in Football League history, who finished second and third respectively. After a rocky start, Rovers recovered well to equalise with Ellis Harrison’s 17th goal of a superb season for the young striker, and there were big refereeing decisions at both ends which had a major impact on the outcome.
Disc 2: The heart-stopping drama of extra-time and the almost unbearable penalty shoot-out, as Chris Lines, Matty Taylor, Lee Brown, Angelo Balanta and Lee Mansell carved themselves into Rovers’ history by netting from the spot to seal Rovers’ promotion, with a 5-3 victory. Plus exclusive interviews with the mastermind behind Rovers’ recovery, Darrell Clarke, along with elated players Lee Mansell, Matty Taylor, Ellis Harrison and Tom Lockyer.