Mangotsfield 3-5 Bristol RoversA competitive and entertaining pre-season game at Mangotsfield tonight saw Rovers ease past their hosts in a game watched by a large crowd, estimated at 1,400.
Before the game Mangotsfield Chairman Mike Richardson presented Darrell Clarke and Marcus Stewart with a memento to mark their achievements in leading Rovers to promotion last season.
The gesture was greatly appreciated and set the tone for the evening.
The home side took the lead after only three minutes after Steve Mildenhall fumbled a shot from George Lloyd. Full back Tyler Lyttle touched the loose ball back to the keeper and thus conceded an indirect free kick for the back pass.
With all Rovers players on the goal line, Matt Groves touched the ball to Ryan Batten who blasted a shot high into the net. Groves tried his luck with an angled drive on 11 minutes but that was gathered by Mildenhall.
With Rovers struggling to make an impact, the home side threatened again and Mildenhall did well to save a close range effort from Liam Monelle following Tom Parrinello’s cross.
Luke James did have a shot blocked as Rovers went on the offensive and they got back on level terms with 21 minutes on the clock. The home side failed to clear a Chris Lines corner from the right and Rory Gaffney was on hand to touch the ball in from close range.
Liam Lawrence skied a free kick over the bar and Byron Moore’s shot met the same fate as Rovers began to get into their stride.
Cristian Montano almost gave Rovers the lead just after the half hour mark with a dipping, swerving shot that goalkeeper Kyle Phillips had difficulty dealing with. In fact the ball hit the keeper and went behind for a corner!
Rovers did take the lead, with an outstanding goal on 41 minutes. Montano was the goalscorer, but it was created by a fine piece of individual play from Byron Moore.
Receiving the ball in his own half and facing his own goal, his turn took out two opposing players and he set off on a run into the Mangotsfield half before finding Montano with a defence splitting pass. ‘Monty’ did the rest, comfortably beating goalkeeper Phillips.
Three minutes into the second half the home side equalised when Rovers failed to cut out a low ball into the area by George Lloyd and Kerry Morgan slotted the ball in at the back post.
Rovers regained the lead on 58 minutes, with a fine individual goal from Ryan Broom. Picking the ball up out on the right, he beat two players on his way into the area before lashing a ferocious drive past Phillips.
Two minutes later Broom scored again. Following a mistake by Scott Brice. Jermaine Easter picked up the loose ball and his shot was parried by Phillips into the path of Broom who fired the ball home.
Jamie Lucas was unlucky not to increase the lead when his superb volley was touched over the bar by Phillips and Broom went close from the resulting corner, his powerful header being kept out by the shot stopper.
Mildenhall made an outstanding save from Groves as the home side sought to pull another goal back, the veteran shot stopper somehow managing to parry a ferocious drive by the former Rovers player.
Five minutes from time Mangotsfield scored a third goal when Ben Bament turned in the area and fired a low shot past Mildenhall.
A minute later Broom was denied a hat trick when he saw Lewis Hogg clear off the line. However Rovers did score again shortly afterwards when James Clarke powered home a header at the back post to register his first ever senior goal.
Mangotsfield: Kyle Phillips (Callum Flynn (85), Ryan Batten, Tom Parrinello (Jordan Williams, 61), Tom Warren (Ben Bament, 46), Scott Brice, Brad Abraham, Kyle Knott (Joe Hillard, 70), Dale Evans (Lewis Hogg, 13), George Lloyd, Liam Monelle (Kerry Morgan, 46), Matt Groves (Ryan Bath, 76)
Substitutes: Taylor McCormack
Rovers: Steve Mildenhall, Tyler Lyttle (Lewis Ellington, 61), James Clarke, Alfie Kilgour (Toby Rennie, 70), Danny Greenslade, Cristian Montano, Liam Lawrence (Connor Jones, 51), Chris Lines, Byron Moore (Ryan Broom, 46) Rory Gaffney (Jamie Lucas, 32), Luke James (Jermaine Easter, 46)