28.01.23 Match Report - Morecambe v Rovers

A tough day at the office for Rovers.

Joey Barton made two changes from our last outing against Accrington Stanley. New signings Ellery Balcombe and Jarell Quansah made their Rovers debuts with James Belshaw and Luke McCormick named on the substitutes bench alongside January signing Grant Ward.

The start of the game created few clear-cut chances at goal. Morecambe’s Jensen Weir hit an effort from around 20-yards-out which proved to be no trouble for debutant Balcombe who watched on as the ball sailed over his bar.

Cole Stockton was well picked out with a long ball over the top of the Rovers defence. The striker controlled the ball with his chest and looked to hit his effort back across Balcombe’s goal. Rovers were back in numbers however and were able to block Stockton’s effort and see the ball behind for a corner kick.

Morecambe had the ball in the net on the 20-minute mark. Daniel Crowley’s effort from range bounced just in front of Balcombe with the Rovers goalkeeper unable to keep out the strike.

Antony Evans had his bending effort palmed away by Connor Ripley as the Gas pushed for an equaliser before the half-time interval. James Connolly was shown the first yellow of the clash after pulling back Stockton as Morecambe looked to attack.

Crowley's curling cross was deflected goalwards by Mellon, but the woodwork came to Rovers' rescue. Moments later, James Gibbons won the ball on the halfway line and looked to play in Josh Coburn who was peeling away from his marker at the back post. The ball was partly cleared by Morecambe and fell to Aaron Collins who hit effort on the half volley and which Ripley was able to tip onto the bar.

Liam Gibson was shown a yellow card just before the half-time interval after an over-the-ball challenge on Antony Evans.

Morecambe doubled their lead minutes after the restart. A free kick was swung into the Rovers box where Michael Mellon was on hand to bundle the ball past Balcombe.

It was three not long after. Donald Love put his laces through the ball, after neat play on the right-hand side of the pitch, and his shot flew past Balcombe and into the far side of the net.

The Shrimps had their fourth on the hour mark. Crowley found Stockton with a through pass and the Morecambe no.9 struck the ball with the outside of his boot past Balcombe and into the net.

Rovers were awarded a penalty kick after Josh Coburn was brought to the ground inside the Morecambe box. Scott Sinclair stepped up for Rovers and saw his spot-kick saved by Ripley to preserve his clean sheet.

The hosts had their fifth of the game in the 87th minute. Substitute Adam Mayor cut in from the left and past Quansah before firing a powerful effort past Balcombe.

Rovers had themselves on the scoresheet as we approached full-time. Aaron Collins finished past Ripley from 15 yards out to give the traveling Gasheads something to cheer about.

Next up for Rovers is the visit of MK Dons to BS7 on Saturday, 4th February (3pm).

Morecambe: Connor Ripley, Donald Love (c), Liam Gibson, Farrend Rawson, Daniel Crowley, Cole Stockton, Michael Mellon, Jensen Weir, Jacob Bedeau, Liam Shaw, Dynel Simeu.

Subs: Adam Smith, Ryan Delaney, Ash Hunter, Arthur Gnahoua, Jon Obika, Ryan Cooney, Adam Mayor

Rovers: Ellery Balcombe, James Connolly, Jarell Quansah, Sam Finley, Scott Sinclair, Aaron Collins, Paul Coutts (c), Antony Evans, James Gibbons, Luca Hoole, Josh Coburn.

Subs: James Belshaw, Grant Ward, John Marquis, Ryan Loft, Harry Anderson, Luke McCormick, Glenn Whelan.

Referee: Will Finnie

Read Time: 3 mins