REPORT: Stevenage 2-1 Cheltenham TownStevenage recorded a 2-1 win over Cheltenham Town in a dramatic League Two game at Broadhall Way.
The Robins started well but found themselves behind when Matt Godden earned, and then scored, a penalty for the home side.
It stayed that way until half time, and even though Stevenage doubled their lead through Luke Wilkinson just after the interval they were also reduced to ten men when Charlie Lee got sent off.
Gary Johnson’s men pulled a goal back with ten minutes to go through Kyle Wootton’s spectacular effort, but couldn’t find an equaliser despite five minutes of added time.
Cheltenham made a bright start to the game and were having plenty of the ball, with James Rowe carving out the first shot on target when he had a go from outside the box that was easily saved by Jamie Jones.
The first quarter of an hour was all played in the Stevenage half as The Robins piled the pressure on, but even though they managed to win three corners they were struggling to get shots on goal.
In true football style, though, it was Stevenage who took the lead with their first chance when Godden was adjudged to have been brought down inside the box, and he then dusted himself down to smash the penalty into the bottom right corner.
Just before the half hour mark it was Scott Brown who kept Stevenage from doubling their lead when he got down tremendously well to save a powerful Jobi McAnuff half-volley, and it stayed 1-0 to the home side at the break.
Six minutes after the interval Cheltenham then had a mountain to clim as Lee headed down a free kick to the edge of the box, and Wilkinson was there to put the ball into the net.
On 56 minutes Stevenage were then reduced to 10 men as Lee picked up his second yellow card for blocking off Alex Pike.
With 25 minutes to go The Robins started to pile the pressure on a little bit more as they broke forward in numbers, but Dan Holman’s eventual shot was saved comfortably by Jones.
Stevenage threatened to extend their lead even further on 74 minutes when McAnuff hit a thunderous shot towards the top corner, but Brown somehow got across to tip it over.
With 10 minutes to go Cheltenham then halved the deficit when Wootton scored an unbelievable overhead kick to set up an interesting end to the game.
Whilst The Robins were looking to get a winner they had to also remain wary at the back, and it was Brown who kept them in it again when he clawed away a deflected McAnuff effort.
Even though there were five minutes added on, Cheltenham couldn’t find that all important goal and were unfortunate to lose 2-1.
Stevenage: J Jones, F Franks, L Wilkinson, J McAnuff, S Schumacher, J McQuoid (M Tonge, 78), T Pett, C O’gillie, C Lee, M Godden (B Kennedy, 55), R Henry (C).
Unused Subs: C Day, D Gorman, D Wells, H Cowans, K Hinds.
Cheltenham Town: S Brown, E Onariase, W Boyle, A Pike, J Cranston, H Pell, J Rowe, C Winchester (D Holman, 59), B Waters (J Dayton, 67), L Davis (J Munns, 78), K Wootton.
Unused Subs: C Kitscha, D O’Shaughnessy, K Storer, D De Girolamo.