City come from behind to defeat Rovers in the Central League Cup.
Alfie Kilgour skippered Rovers Development side in this evening’s Central League Cup clash against local rivals Bristol City in a game played at Weston’s Woodspring Stadium.
Two goals ahead at the break, thanks to first half goals from Cameron Ebbutt and Luke Russe, Rovers conceded three goals in nine second half minutes and saw Kilgour sent off for picking up a straight redcard for handball.
It was a game that saw both sides enjoy spells of possession, with Rovers often looking as though they were more up for a physical battle than their Ashton Gate counterparts and to ship three goals in the manner they did was hugely disappointing.
In a frantic opening spell City created the first opening, but a long range shot from Connor Lemonheigh-Evans was deflected away for a throw in by Ben Morgan.
Although Rovers were enjoying a great deal of possession, it was City who again went close to breaking the deadlock when a free kick, taken by Jake Andrews, following a foul by Kilgour, flew just over the bar.
However Rovers’ perseverance paid off and they scored with their first penetrating attack on 17 minutes. Dunnwald made a powerful run down the left a fired a low cross into the area where Ebbutt was on hand to touch the ball in from close range.
George Nurse then tried his luck from distance, but the defender’s low shot was underhit and easily dealt with by Jonkerman.
At the other end Thom Jonkerman made an excellent save from Rory Holden’s angled drive as City went in search of an equaliser.
Just after City had been forced to make a substitution, replacing the injured Nurse with Cameron Pring, Rovers took the lead with a
spectacular strike from Luke Russe.The young midfielder picked up the ball some 35 yards out and let fly with a stunning strike that flew into the net past a startled Jojo Woolacott.
With five minutes of the half remaining Jonkerman prevented City from pulling a goal back whe n he dived full length to touch a glancing header from Tyreeq Bakinson round the post.
Bakinson fired a long range effort over the bar five minutes into the second half before two players, one from each side, were shown yellow cards by referee Craig Simpson. Rovers’ Ben Morgan and City’s Tin Platovic were the recipients, booked in separate incidents within a minute of each other.
Ryan Broom then went close to extending the lead, but his free kick was well saved by Woollacott and then Rhys Kavanagh saw a fierce angled drive blocked by a packed City defence.
As Rovers continued to press for a third goal, Dunnwald was unlucky not to get on the scoresheet when his delightful chip from the right saw Woollacott deny him with a fine fingertip save.
After Cameron Hargreaves had cleared off the line at one end, Rovers went straight up the pitch and almost scored themselves, but Ebbutt was denied a second goal by Woollacott’s fine save.
Things went from bad to worse for Rovers as they conceded again five minutes from time when Andrews headed past Jonkerman following a corner from the left.
City were awarded a penalty on 67 minutes when Sam Blake’s challenge on Jake Andrews was deemed to be an unfair one. However Andrews took the resulting spot kick himself and hit his effort high over the crossbar.
City pulled a goal back on 76 minutes when Jonkerman flapped at a corner from the right and the ball fell kindly to Aaron Parsons who touched the ball over the line following a goalmouth scramble.
Hargreaves then tested Woollacott before Kilgour was red carded for handball inside the area and Lemonheigh-Evans stroked the ball past Jonkerman to bring the scores level.
City then completed nine minutes of scoring to go ahead for the first time as Jake Andrews headed home from a corner.
Rovers went close to equalising as the game drew to a close, but Dunnwald was again denied by Woollacott on two occasions.
Bristol City: Jojo Woolacott, Aaron Parsons, George Nurse (Cameron Pring, 34), Tyreeq Bakinson, Tin Platovic, Aden Baldwin, Kel Akpobire, Connot Lemonheigh-Evans, Cameron Allen (Marcus Day, 61), Jake Andrews, Rory Holden
Substitutes: Max O’Leary, Chris Turner-Williams, Zac Smith
Bristol Rovers: Thom Jonkerman, Sam Blake, Alfie Kilgour, Ben Morgan, Michael Kelly, Luke Russe, Cameron Hargreaves, Ryan Broom, Rhys Kavanagh, Kenan Dunnwald, Cameron Ebbutt (Kunle Otudeko, 83)
Substitutes: Andre Alexis, Kunle Otudeko, Charlie Ten Grotenhuis, Lewis Leigh-Golchrist, Connor Jones