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Match Reports

REPORT: Forest Green Rovers 1-1 Cheltenham

25 November 2017

Match Reports

REPORT: Forest Green Rovers 1-1 Cheltenham

25 November 2017

Striker Mo Eisa returned to scoring ways but Cheltenham Town were left to rue missed opportunities as they were held to a derby day draw with Forest Green Rovers in Sky Bet League Two.

Eisa returned to the starting line-up, after being rested in the midweek draw with Cambridge United, and netted six minutes before the break as he drilled a strike into the bottom corner 

Home hitman Christian Doidge had given the hosts the lead early on with his 11th of the season after a defensive mix-up for the Robins.

However, the second half was all the visitors and only a superb one-handed save from man-of-the-match Brad Collins denied Eisa as Cheltenham dominated but could find no way through.

In bright autumnal sunshine, it was the Robins that made the brighter start as Harry Pell screwed a shot wide before Eisa cut inside and crashed in the box under pressure, with penalty appeals waved away.

And it was Forest Green that opened the scoring on eight minutes when a mistake at the back saw Doidge go clean through and he made no mistake as he buried the chance past a badly exposed Flinders.

The Robins looked to respond with Dawson skidding a header wide from a left wing cross and Grimes just failing to get enough connection on long diagonal from Taylor Moore.

Dawson and Eisa then broke the offside trap twice in quick succession, with the latter getting in down the right and crossing for Pell who side footed over the bar.

Forest Green threatened again when Laird's chipped ball fell to Doidge, but he could not quite bring the ball under his control before Flinders raced off his line and smothered the chance.

Both teams had a man booked, as Isiah Osbourne and Harry Pell went into the book of official Oldham, before Cheltenham took control of the game in final ten minutes of the half.

Home midfielder Drissa Traore got a cross field ball all wrong and passed straight to Wright who tested the handling of Collins with a snap shot from 25 yards.

But home stopper Collins could no nothing moments later when Eisa was played in and he fired a sweetly struck shot into the bottom right-hand corner.

Eisa was suddenly alive as he curled a shot inches wide, after cutting inside in the area, before gliding past his man and almost finding Wright with a fizzing low cross.

And just before the break more neat incisive play from Sellars saw him chip into the path of Pell who took aim from inside the penalty area and saw the shot beaten away by Collins.

Cheltenham continued to impose their game on Forest Green at the start of the second half and only a brilliant one-handed save from Collins stopped Eisa as he arrived at the back post.

Wright then almost profited at the back post from Pell's swirling ball before the striker found side netting after Dawson rolled him in.

Sellars was next to twice try his luck from range before chipping an intelligent ball in for Wright who arrived late but guided a header off target.

Wave after wave of visiting attacks rained down as Winchester cracked a fine rasping drive that Collins tipped over as it arrowed towards his goal.

The Robins were forced into a change, when Eisa went down after racing after a long ball and he was replaced by Storer.

Pell then curled just wide, after a scramble in the home penalty box, before a high ball in caused more panic and Forest Green hurriedly hacked a header off the line.

In a late twist the home side almost snatched the points when Bennett saw a low drive fly past the post in the eighth minute of injury time.

FOREST GREEN ROVERS: Collins, Bennett, Laird (Wishart 60), Traore, Collins, Marsh-Brown, Doidge, Brown (Bugiel 71), Fitzwater, Iacovitti, Osbourne (Roberts 45). Subs not used: Pickering (Gk), Randall, Gomes, James.

CHELTENHAM TOWN: Flinders; Boyle, Grimes, Moore, Winchester , Morrell, Dawson, Pell, Sellars, Eisa (Storer 74), Wright. Subs not used: Lovett (Gk), Atangana, O’Shaughnessy, Bower, Hinds, Lloyd.

REFEREE: Scott Oldham

ATTENDANCE: 3,641 (985 from Cheltenham)

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