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Rovers u21s 0 Brighton u21s 0

2 March 2015

Rovers and Brighton's Under-21s played out a goalless draw at Ewood on Monday night.

In a match of few chances, a draw was just about a fair result in chilly conditions Ewood Park.

The first half saw Devarn Green and Yann Songo'o go closest for Rovers, whilst Danny Pappoe and James Tilley had the best chances for the visitors.

With last Thursday's Premier League Cup extra-time exploits taking it's toll, the Seagulls enjoyed the better opportunities in the second half as Rovers struggled to gain any forward momentum.

After Pappoe headed over and Chiki Kandi fired into the side-netting, the home side had David Raya to thank for earning them a share of the points, denying Albion captain Glen Rea when the midfielder was through on goal with just the keeper to beat.

After three games in seven days, the Under-21s are back in action again this Friday when they travel to face Reading once more.

The first half was an even affair with little between the two hard-working teams.

With both sides closing space down well, little time was offered on the ball, with the first 20 minutes notable only for long-range strikes from Lewis Hardcastle for Rovers and Bradley Barry for Brighton, but neither effort was on target.

Rovers' best chance of joy was coming down their left with Mark Edgar and Connor Mahoney troubling the Albion right flank, but strong defending in the centre kept the home side from profiting.

At the other end Danny Pappoe tried a spectacular volley from a corner kick but the defender was well off target.

On the half hour Mahoney again had the beating of his man on the left to deliver a cross to the back post, Hyuga Tanner nodded on for Devarn Green but the forward's header bounced narrowly wide of goal.

The Seagulls responded with a chance of their own with James Tilley claiming possession off Bauress, but the midfielder's strike was easily claimed by David Raya.

The final action of a first half light on chances saw Yann Songo'o beat keeper Joshua Smith to the ball but Pappoe was alert to the danger to clear.

Modou Cham replaced Lewis Hardcastle at the break but it was the visitors who started the second half the stronger.

Two minutes in a Jesse Starkey corner kick picked out Pappoe unmarked in the six-yard box but the defender headed well over.

Starkey then went close himself after James Muitt had been fouled on the edge of the area, the winger's free-kick beating the wall but flashing the wrong side of the post.

Devarn Green then showed good trickery to evade two challenges to race into the area, but whilst his square ball found Cham, his effort was blocked.

But that was a rare chance for the home side as Brighton continued to pose the greater threat. Chiki Kandi, who made a couple of appearances for Rovers' Academy last season whilst on trial, could only find the side-netting after bursting into the box.

The chance of the game came with 16 minutes to go and also brought the save of the game. Brighton substitute Jason Davis saw his forward ball deflect straight into the path of Glenn Rea clean through on goal, but Raya saved superbly with his legs to deny the visiting captain.

With Rovers understandably leggy following their 120 minutes on Thursday night, the Seagulls ended the stronger of the two sides, but Eric Kinder's side defended superbly in the closing stages to earn their share of the points.

ROVERS: Raya, Daly, Edgar, Hardcastle (sub Cham 46 mins), Lavelle, Songo'o, Green, Bauress (c) (sub Jones 80 mins) , Mansell, Tanner, Mahoney.

Subs not used: Rittenberg, Crump, Nyambe.

Goals: None

Booked: Mahoney

BRIGHTON: Smith, Barry, Hunt, Rea (c). Pappoe, White, Muitt (sub Harris 67 mins), Hutchinson, Kandi (sub Deen 73 mins), Tilley (sub Davis 67 mins), Starkey.

Subs not used: Doherty, Barnett.

Goals: None

Booked: Hunt, Davis

Attendance: 150

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