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Match Reports

Match Report : 04/10/2014

4 October 2014

Report: Rovers 0 Huddersfield Town 0

Jordan Rhodes missed a second half penalty as Rovers and Huddersfield Town played out a goalless draw.

So often the hero in blue and white, Rhodes put a 61st minute penalty wide of goal as Rovers had to settle for a point.

Games at Ewood Park this season have been high on entertainment, but it wasn't the case on this occasion.

After a first half low on chances, the game sprang into life in the second when Josh King, restored to the starting line-up, struck the bar with a header.

But it was Rhodes whose miss would prove costly from the spot after Grant Holt had handled in the area.

Town keeper Alex Smithies saved well from King and Williamson, before the visitors threatened. Nahki Wells firing over when well placed, as the points were shared in a repeat of last season's scoreline.

Following the midweek defeat at Rotherham, boss Gary Bowyer made three changes for the visit of the Terriers.

Two of them were enforced as suspension meant no Corry Evans, whilst Rudy Gestede missed out with a hamstring strain. Chris Taylor dropped to the bench as Lee Williamson, Josh King and Tom Cairney returned.

The visitors made one change from their Wednesday win over Wolves, forward Nahki Wells coming in for midfielder Jonathan Hogg.

Rovers started with Josh King along side Jordan Rhodes up front and it was the Norwegian who would have the first opportunity inside a minute.

A clearance from right back Ben Marshall saw Rhodes flick on, but despite King getting the better of Huddersfield captain Mark Hudson, he over-ran the ball in the area.

The Terriers came back quickly with Sean Scannell threatening, Ryan Tunnicliffe and Markus Olsson throwing themselves in front of the ball to block.

In a stop-start first half Rovers eventually gained the upper hand without ever seriously testing Alex Smithies in the opposition goal.

Smithies needed two attempts to claim a Marshall free-kick at the midway point, before the returning Tom Cairney fired wide after King's quick-fire break.

Shane Duffy had a strong first half defensively before the Irishman went looking to notch his first goal at the other. A 30-yard thunderbolt was heading goalwards until Hudson's timely blocked. Whilst his defensive partner Grant Hanley glanced a Craig Conway corner just wide.

Rovers started the second half in the manner in which they ended the first as they pressed for the opening goal.

It almost came on 52 minutes when after neat approach play the ball was spread wide to Marshall on the flank, his cross picked out King in the area but the Norwegian skimmed the top of the crossbar with his header.

On the hour mark the home side were given the perfect opportunity to take the lead, but again they failed to do so.

From a Conway free-kick, Shane Duffy's header struck an arm in the area and referee Nigel Miller pointed to the spot.

But against his former club, the usually ever-reliable Rhodes fluffed his lines, putting his shot wide of Smithies but also the wrong side of the upright.

Despite that setback Rovers continued to press. As a Rhodes shot squirmed under Smithies it fell to King but he couldn't take the chance as defender and goalkeeper got back to smother.

It was all Rovers, Lee Williamson was denied by a sensational save after King and Rhodes couldn't force their way through, before Conway lashed an effort a yard wide.

Then a Hanley header from a Conway corner was off target, before Smithies was called upon once more to make a superb save. After Cairney's slide-rule pass, King skipped past his marker but the Terriers' keeper saved at his near post.

Having seen off the Rovers threat, it was the Terriers who were the more likely of the two sides to grab a winner as the game entered it's closing stages as they pressed the home side back.

Jacob Butterfield was just a yard off target with a shot from outside the area, before a long-range strike from fellow midfielder Harry Bunn saw Jason Steele fail to hold, but Hanley was alert to the danger as Nahki Wells closed in.

Wells then spurned a great chance to put the visitors in front. Blazing over Bunn's centre, before Bunn hit a shot on the angle wide of goal.

That would prove to be the final meaningful chance as both sides looked for a late goal, Hudson heading wide for the visitors, Rhodes doing likewise for the hosts.

So Rovers go into the break with their second clean sheet of the season, they return to action in a fortnight away at Ipswich Town.

ROVERS: Steele, Marshall, Hanley (c), Duffy, Olsson, Cairney, Williamson, Tunnicliffe (sub Taylor 88 mins), Conway, King, Rhodes.

Subs not used: Eastwood (GK), Henley, Kilgallon, Varney, Songo'o, Lenihan.

Goals: None.

Booked: Hanley, Williamson.

HUDDERSFIELD: Smithies, Hudson (c), Scannell, Butterfield, Coady, Holt, Robinson, Wells (sub Peltier 86 mins), Smith, Bunn, Lynch.

Subs not used: Murphy (GK), Dixon, Wallace, Stead, Ward, Majewski.

Goals: None.

Booked: Holt.

Attendance: 14,662 (including 1593 visiting supporters).

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