17.09.22 Rovers v Lincoln Match Report

Rovers are defeated at The Mem.

Rovers lost their second game in a row in a frantic match at The Memorial Stadium.

Joey Barton made two changes to the starting XI from Tuesday's defeat against Ipswich Town. Glenn Whelan and Ryan Loft came into the side for Alfie Kilgour who dropped to the bench and Bobby Thomas who missed out through suspension.


It was almost the perfect start for Rovers. Trevor Clarke's cross deflected into the path of Luke McCormick who saw his shot zip narrowly past the top corner of Carl Rushworth's net. 

It was, however, soon to be the perfect start for Lincoln. A low cross across the Rovers penalty area was poked under Belshaw by Ben House for his second goal in two games. 

It got worse for Rovers in the 14th minute when Glenn Whelan was adjudged to have fouled Ben House in the box and referee Nield didn't hesitate to point to the spot. Jack Diamond stepped up and rolled the ball past Belshaw to double the Imps lead. 


Rovers didn't let the two early goals dampen their spirit. A punt upfield by Belshaw was flicked on by Ryan Loft and into the path of Aaron Collins, who rounded Rushworth and rolled the ball into an empty net to halve the deficit. 


Antony Evans came within inches of scoring his second goal of the season. The midfielder's free-kick was whipped over the wall and had beaten Rushworth but crashed off the post and away from danger. 

Ryan Loft thought he had pulled the Gas level just past the half-hour mark. After rounding Rushworth, Loft shot at goal and looked certain to score had it not been for some unbelievable defending from Lincoln captain Regan Poole, who deflected the ball over the bar. 

Lincoln had their fourth five minutes after the restart. Luke McCormick's cross was cut out by Lincoln and they immediately looked to hit Rovers on the counter-attack. Oakley-Boothe surged into the area and had his effort blocked, only for the ball to fall to Matty Virtue who fired the ball past Belshaw to the delight of the Lincoln fans behind the goal.

Lincoln had their fifth minutes later. Jack Diamond held the ball up and, despite pressure from Harry Anderson, dug out a shot at goal and, with the help of a slight deflection, the ball looped over the outstretched hand of Belshaw and into the net. 

Ryan Loft pulled one back for the Gas just before the hour mark. A surging run from Lewis Gordon ended with the defender rolling the ball into Loft's feet who took aim and found the bottom corner for his third league goal of the season.

Lincoln immediately responded. Ben House's sensational effort flew over Belshaw and into the far side of the net for Lincoln's sixth of the afternoon.

Rovers hit back once more. Aaron Collins latched onto a through ball and, for the second time of the afternoon, rounded Rushworth and fired the ball into an empty net. 

Joey Barton mixed his side up with the introductions of Harvey Saunders, John Marquis, Paul Coutts and Sylvester Jasper as the Gas looked for a route back into the game.

Six minutes of additional time was signalled by the fourth official. However, it was too little too late for the Gas and the visitors head back to Lincoln with all three points.

Next up for Rovers is the visit of Accrington Stanley to The Mem on Saturday, 24th September (3pm).

ROVERS: James Belshaw, Lewis Gordon, Luca Hoole, Glenn Whelan, Harry Anderson (62'), Trevor Clarke (62'), Sam Finley (c), Antony Evans, Luke McCormick (62'), Aaron Collins, Ryan Loft (77').

Subs: Anssi Jaakkola, John Marquis (62'), Harvey Saunders (62'), Paul Coutts (62'), Alfie Kilgour, Sylvester Jasper (77'), Zain Westbrooke.

LINCOLN CITY: Carl Rushworth, Regan Poole (c), Tashan Oakley-Boothe, Jordan Garrick, Paudie O'Connor, Ben House, Lasse Sorensen, Timothy Eyoma, Sean Roughan, Matty Virtue, Jack Diamond.

Subs: Jordan Wright, Adam Jackson, Max Sanders, Charles Vernam, Tom Hopper, Jamie Robson, Jacob Davenport.

Referee: Tom Nield

Attendance: 8,078 (422 away)

Read Time: 4 mins