Another Roy of the Rovers story for Iron
Forest Green Rovers 0 Braintree Town 2
BRAINTREE Town continued their fantastic start to life in the Blue Square Premier with a deserved first away win of the season at Forest Green Rovers in the Cotswolds last night.
A clinical strike from Ben Wright in the 35th minute gave the Iron the upper hand, and substitute Andy Yiadom wrapped up the points with a delightful lob in the fifth and final minute of injury-time.
It was no more than Alan Devonshire’s men deserved for another impressive display, following on from the 5-0 home win over Grimsby and the 1-1 draw against Mansfield.
Braintree’s fate will probably still be determined by their home form this season, but they have already proved that they can compete at this level on the road.
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After a cagey opening from both sides, left-back Aswad Thomas spurned a good chance to break the deadlock for the visitors on 15 minutes. The ex-Charlton trainee burst through on goal, only to scoop his shot several yards over the bar.
The Iron continued to create the better openings. Winger Merrick James-Lewis ballooned a 20-yarder over the top, before skipper Kenny Davis drilled a goalbound shot straight at home keeper Matt Bulman.
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Fresh from an eye-catching 6-1 win at Alfreton Town over the weekend, Rovers finally began to threaten around the half-hour mark.
Reece Styche, who bagged a brace at Alfreton, eyed up the target with a ferocious long-range drive that Iron keeper Nathan McDonald did well to push around his post.
But it was the Iron who drew first blood, thanks to a Wright’s opener.
There was a degree of good fortune in the build-up, because a home pass ricocheted off referee Tim Robinson to gift the visitors possession. Wright charged onto Jai Reason’s pass and beat keeper Bulman with a deadly strike from just inside the left-edge of the penalty area.
Reason was agonisingly close to doubling the lead before half-time. The ex-Cambridge and Crawley midfielder had his head in the hands after watching a 20-yard bullet fly inches wide of target.
Rovers struggled to get out of their own half and Chibuzor Chilaka went close with an angled shot that took a deflection as it skidded wide.
Although rarely troubled all evening, Iron keeper McDonald came to his side’s rescue with an outstanding save in the 80th minute. He stood up well to block Styche’s shot from close in.
But Rovers never threatened again and Yiadom put the icing on the cake with a second deep into stoppage time.
BRAINTREE: McDonald, Peters, Bailey-Dennis, Paine, Thomas, James-Lewis (sub Yiadom, 68), Symons, Davis, Reason, Marks, Wright (sub Chilaka, 73). Unused subs: Quinton, O’Connor, Jones.
Referee: Simon Robinson (West Sussex)