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Match Report


Posted Thu 21 Jun 12 at 20:15 PM

Rovers 2 Leicester City 1

Rovers maintained their unbeaten start to the season after a hard fought 2-1 win over Leicester City.

Stunning strikes from Nuno Gomes and Morten Gamst Pedersen ensured seven points from a possible nine but they were made to work hard for the victory against a lively Leicester side.

After Paul Robinson had pulled off a stunning save to deny David Nugent it was Nuno Gomes who opened the scoring on 33, finding Jason Lowe with a ball down the right before getting on the end of his return to sweep the ball home from the edge of the area.

Leicester certainly weren't without their chances, but they levelled on 56 minutes due to a mix-up between Scott Dann and Paul Robinson, Jamie Vardy needing no second invitation to run through and score.

The game could have gone either way after that but it was settled on 80 minutes with another quality strike, Morten Gamst Pedersen cutting onto his right foot before curling an outstanding shot in off the far post.

Leicester threw everything at Rovers in the final moments but the defence held strong to claim another three points to make it a great first week of football.

With three games inside seven days Steve Kean again chose to make changes to the side that had defeated Hull City in midweek.

Injury meant that Colin Kazim-Richards, Bradley Orr and David Dunn missed out whilst Fabio Nunes dropped to the bench.

Of those introduced, there was a debut for young forward Edinho, whilst Bruno Ribeiro also made his first start following his debut as a substitute in midweek. Morten Gamst Pedersen and Nuno Gomes returned to the starting eleven after starting the match on Wednesday on the bench.

In drizzly conditions the match at Ewood Park was certainly slow to get going and whilst Rovers passed the ball about confidently enough, they lacked that cutting edge going forward.

The visitors didn't however and went very close to opening the scoring on 12 minutes when a ball in from the right was met by David Nugent but Paul Robinson pulled off a superb point-blank save to deny the former Preston man.

Markus Olsson fired well over from distance whilst at the other end Jamie Vardy headed over when well placed. Then on the half hour Scott Dann was there to make an important interception as Andy King fired goalwards after getting the better of Gael Givet.

It would prove to be an important challenge from Dann as Rovers would soon go up the other end and open the scoring. Nuno Gomes starting and finishing the 33rd minute move, sweeping the ball wide to the right where Jason Lowe got the better of Paul Konchesky before returning it back to the Portuguese legend and he finished in fine style from the edge of the box, the ball creeping just beyond Kasper Schmeichel into the corner of the net.

Back came Leicester and stout defending was needed after Dickson Etuhu had lost possession in the centre, David Nugent let fly from distance only for Paul Robinson beat the ball away to where Scott Dann ushered it back to the 'keeper.

Steve Kean made a change at the start of the second half with Edinho sacrificed for David Goodwillie, the young Portuguese forward had worked hard on his debut but without reward.

Whilst the first half was short on chances, the second half didn't disappoint. Leicester wasting little time in threatening as Wes Morgan headed goalwards, Paul Robinson and Bruno Ribeiro both getting the ball away on the line.

Bruno then showed his attacking prowess, latching onto a ball from Jason Lowe but his glancing header was wide of goal.

But on 56 minutes the visitors deservedly drew level albeit in fortunate circumstances for the Foxes.

A ball forward was glanced backwards by Gael Givet and as Scott Dann looked for Paul Robinson to clean up their hesitancy proved costly as Jamie Vardy stole in to make no mistake.

The game could have gone either way after that as both sides pressed for the crucial goal. Again Rovers attacked down the right with Lowe finding Ribeiro but his curling shot was wide.

Then after a Ben Marshall free kick was blocked, Paul Konchesky saw his shot cleared by Danny Murphy.

With ten minutes to go Rovers got their noses back in front with a goal of high quality from their talisman Morten Gamst Pedersen. Substitute Ruben Rochina saw his ambitious effort blocked by Neil Danns and as the ball bounced away it fell perfectly for Pedersen on the left side of the area, the Norwegian cut inside onto his right foot and he curled a delightful shot in off the far post.

To their credit Leicester certainly didn't let their heads drop and pressed until the end, Jason Lowe with a huge tackle as Vardy again threatened.

The added minutes saw the Foxes send ball after ball into the Rovers box but the defence held solid to make it a great week.

ROVERS: Robinson, Lowe, Dann, Givet, Markus Olsson, Ribeiro, Etuhu, Murphy, Pedersen, Nuno Gomes (sub Rochina 77 mins), Edinho (sub Goodwillie 46 mins).

Subs not used: Kean (GK), Fabio Nunes, Formica, Paulo Jorge, Hanley.

Goals: Nuno Gomes 33 mins, Pedersen 80 mins.

Booked: Murphy.

LEICESTER CITY: Schmeichel, De Laet, Konchesky, Drinkwater (sub Danns 76 mins), Morgan (c), Marshall (sub Beckford 90 mins), Vardy, King, Dyer (sub Knockaert 69 mins), Moore, Nugent.

Subs not used: Logan (GK), Waghorn, James, Schlupp.

Goals: Vardy 56 mins.

Booked: De Laet.

Attendance: 13,935.

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