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Forest Green: Rovers beaten at Hereford United

By The Citizen  |  Posted: December 28, 2013

By Pete Orchard

Pennock

Ady Pennock

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HEREFORD UNITED 1 FOREST GREEN ROVERS 0

Forest Green ended a year to forget with a fittingly frustrating Skrill Premier defeat at Edgar Street.

Jon Brown's strike in the 26th minute was enough for Hereford to claim the spoils in front of the live BT Sport cameras, despite Rovers' usual domination of the possession statistics.

With Jared Hodgkiss not risked and Eddie Oshodi suspended there was a rare start for Kieron Forbes in the unfamiliar position of right-back.

Ed Asafu-Adjaye continued his run at left-back, and he almost made a spectacular impact inside the first minute when he let fly with a 30-yard shot that whistled wide.

Matty Taylor chanced his arm from similar range and again had home goalkeeper Daniel Lloyd-Weston back-pedalling, although he could watch it go over the crossbar.

Lloyd-Weston was called into action in the 15th minute, clutching James Norwood's header in routine fashion after the Rovers forward had combined nicely with Danny Wright.

Five minutes later Sam Russell was tested for the first time, and his handling was equally sure in keeping out a skidding drive from Damon Lathrope.

The visitors seemed to be carrying the greater threat, and Norwood's header from an Anthony Barry corner had to be scrambled off the line by an alert Lloyd-Weston at the near post.

So when Hereford opened the scoring it was something of a bolt from the blue, Brown's shot from the edge of the penalty area arrowing into the bottom corner of the net after Micah Evans' cross had not been properly cleared.

Rovers' response was immediate, and Al Bangura connected superbly with a 20-yard piledriver that was tipped over by Lloyd-Weston.

Moments later Norwood played a delightful one-two with Wright and produced another effort on target, only to be foiled by another low save by Lloyd-Weston.

Former Cheltenham Town custodian Lloyd-Weston was having an impressive night, and he foiled Marcus Kelly after the midfielder had surged admirably into the box from halfway.

The half-time interval came at a decent time for the Bulls, and they were first to threaten in the second period when Evans weaved his way into space in the right channel and saw a near-post shot saved by Russell.

Rovers took time to rediscover their rhythm, but only a superb block by Rod McDonald prevented Norwood applying the finishing touch to a nice move in the 62nd minute.

Barry saw a curling effort saved by Lloyd-Weston, while at the other end Brown volleyed wastefully wide after pulling clear of Forbes to meet Michael Rankine's cross.

The 74th minute heralded Steve Brogan's first appearance under Ady Pennock as a replacement for Kelly, and within seconds the ex-Rotherham United man fired one across the face of goal and just wide.

Brogan then turned provider with an inswinging free-kick that was nodded wide by fellow substitute Matthew Barnes-Homer.

Hereford United: D. Lloyd-Weston; D. Collins (D. Leadbitter 68), L. Graham, R. McDonald, C. Bush; M. Evans, D. Lathrope, J. O'Keefe, J. Brown; M. Rankine (D. Walker79), C. Sharp (J. Edge 84); Subs not used: E. Odhiambo, J. Edwards.

Forest Green: S. Russell; K. Forbes, A. Racine, D. Bennett, E. Asafu-Adjaye; A. Barry, A. Bangura, M. Kelly (S. Brogan 74); M. Taylor (M. Barnes-Homer 64), D. Wright (J. Alabi 64), J. Norwood; Subs not used: R. Styche, A. McHugh.

Referee: S. Bennett (Staffs)

Attendance: 1,848

Star man: Al Bangura

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