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Match Reports

FA Youth Cup Report: Bristol Rovers 1-2 Robins

2 November 2023

The young Robins defeated Bristol Rovers 2-1 at the Memorial Stadium to advance to the second round of the FA Youth Cup.

Goals from Freddy Willcox and Tom King either side of the break were enough to see the Robins through despite Cam Walters' red card and a late consolation from Ollie Dewsbury.

It was Town who started the better of the two sides, coming close after just 10 minutes.

Sopuru Obieri beat his man before firing at goal, but Rovers keeper Ross Mason did well to beat away the effort at his near post.

King came close again for the Robins just moments later, dancing past a sea of Rovers bodies before letting fly, but Mason once again was equal to the effort.

The opening goal would come just before the half hour mark and it was King who was right in the middle of the action once again.

The young striker raced in behind down the right flank before cutting it back to Willcox in the area, who calmly put the Robins into a first half lead.

The hosts rarely threatened in the opening 45 and only brought goalkeeper Archie Burford into action for the first time just before the interval.

Kofi Shaw worked the space for a powerful shot, but Burford did well to turn the effort away from goal.

Willcox came close to a second not long after the break, when his whipped corner caused panic, clipping the top of the Rovers crossbar.

The hosts began to work their way into the game and nearly found a leveller not long after the hour, denied however by some heroic defending to block Dewsbury's strike.

A turning point in the contest came a minute later, when Walters' professional foul gave referee George Lynch no choice but to brandish a red card for the young centre-back. 

The hosts looked to make the man advantage but just couldn't seem to find a way through the resilient Robins backline.

And they were punished in injury time when King's pressing saw him win the ball before rounding Mason and finishing well to put Town two to the good.

Dewsbury pulled one back just moments later for the hosts and Charlie White came almightily close to a late equaliser, but the Robins stood strong and held on to win the first round tie.

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