FOLLOWING the long midweek trip down to Norwich last Wednesday night the lads were on the road again, this time in the east end of London.
Brisbane Road lies in the shadows of the Olympic Park, and at one stage there was talk of them moving in to play their games there, along with West Ham or Spurs. They could have done with some of the Olympic funding for the away end, as the seats were wooden and very ucomfortable, but grabbing the three points made us forget about that.
The opening 20 minutes saw us take a two-goal lead, firstly great work by Chris Brown, who fed Iain Hume and he scored a cracking goal. It was not long before David Cotterill poked home the second. The Os rarely threatened our goal, and when they did, Gary Woods handled the ball well, helped out by Rob Jones, who was a rock in the heart of the defence.
Orient manager Russell Slade described our win as ugly, but if ugly means three points bring it on. Although there was no more scoring, the lads had done their job. At least on the way back we got a glimpse of some of the Olympic Park and facilities.
So on to Tuesday night, with the fans feeling confident, we took on Preston at home but we let ourselves down, especially with marking from set pieces.
Jake King headed home after earlier rattling the crossbar. Rovers equalised on the stroke of half-time when Cotterill’s free-kick whizzed off the head of Preston’s Byrom. We gave the ball away too easily in the second half and gave away two more sloppy goals, with the nearest we came saw Paynter’s shot come back of the bar.
We had our lowest crowd of the season (5,681), But the fact that it was a horrible night, our home record is not the best, and money is tight, all contributed.
But it’s not just not something affecting Rovers - crowds around the country are down, Sky does not help by making too much football available on the box. Their money may be good for the Premier League, but not the lower down the leagues you go.
Dean did not start doing his after match interviews until 10.25pm, which made it a late night for the media.
We have another home game tomorrow against Shrewsbury Town, a difficult one to call, and with Rob Jones suspended the task is made harder.
It will be interesting to see what the attendance is.
Tuesday night’s JP Trophy game pitches us against defending champions Chesterfield. A reminder that this is a 7pm kick-off.
We will NOT be running a supporters bus from the Retford, Harworth and Rossington area due to the kick-off time. Aplogies for any in-convinence caused.
Please can you book by Sunday night if possible for the Hartlepool game, as I’m away next week but need to get the buses sorted out before I go. Call me on 07961-727769 or Len South on 01302-817347.
Bus times: Retford 10.45am, Harworth 10.50, Bawtry/Rossington 11.00, Hare and Tortoise 11.05, Infirmary 11.15 and Keepmoat 11.30.