Last night, Rovers came back from being 1-2 down in the FA Cup to win the tie 3-2 late on! Goals from Josh Adeyileka, Taylor Rhiney and a deflected freekick from Jemale McKenzie saw The Blues knock out The Rocks.
Due to circumstances surrounding Rovers home stadium, the game was played at Leighton Towns ground - Bell Close. Rovers began the tie with three changes to the team that played in Essex on Saturday as Alfie Warman, Joe Rider and Kai Phelan were replaced by Elgeniy Daalberg (Dutchie), Ashton Grant and Josh Adeyileka giving the starting eleven a bit more pace both defensively and going forward.
The game got off to a quick start as both teams had early chances, Rovers most early coming from a dangerous link up down the wing from Ryan Neufville and Dutchie in the sixth minute, however, the attack broke down before they could get a shot away.
The first fifteen minutes were non-stop and seemed more like a basketball game than a football match as it was so end to end, however, neither team had tested the keepers yet. That was until The Rocks took the lead in the thirteenth minute when striker Odukoya rattled the post, his effort bounced back into the path of Olukolu who took on multiple Rovers defenders before laying it off to Mo Amir who curled his effort into the top corner of the goal from 20 yards. 0-1 to the Rocks.
After going a goal down, Barton looked the more threatening side as the Rocks were happy to sit back and defend their lead, Josh Adeyileka, Taylor Rhiney and Dutchie all had a go for goal but were either denied by the Rock's number one or put their efforts wide. After a few more broken attacks, Rovers got their equaliser with just seven minutes until the interval when Ryan Neufvilles's saved effort fell into the path of Adeyileka who found the back of the net. 1-1
It looked as if the two teams would be going into the break level, but the Rocks took the lead with just seconds to go as Olukolu slotted past Groom.1-2 to the Rocks.
Coming out for the second half, Rovers had a massive task ahead if they wanted to stay in the Cup, and they set out straight away to fight their way back into the game. Early chances from Rhiney, Dutchie and Moloney were promising but Rovers were still struggling to break through the Rocks defensive line. A change in formation and a few substitutions saw Matty Harriott come on for his Rovers debut whilst player-manager Jermaine Hall also came onto the field of play.
Rovers continued to be a threat and should have had their equaliser on 71 minutes when Neufville's shot looked certain to go in but bounced over the crossbar. After a clash between the two teams, five players were booked and Rovers last change was imminent as, club captain Paul Andrews entered the action, allowing McKenzie to move up front. The changes proved crucial straight away as Andrews cleared the danger from a Rocks attack and shortly after Hall showed his experience up front to win a penalty as he was hacked down whilst holding the ball up. Taylor Rhiney stepped up to take the penalty in the eighty-third minute and equalised for the Rovers! 2-2
The Rovers weren't done there though as they instantly went in search of the winner, and just three minutes after getting the equaliser, Rovers won a freekick on the edge of the box. Up stepped Jemale McKenzie, his freekick took a deflection off the wall and bounced into the back of the net after the keeper was sent the wrong way! Goal to the Rovers, the first time they've been in front in this game! 3-2
After getting their third in the eighty-sixth minute, Rovers still had a long way to go as they needed to hold off any attacks for 4 minutes of regular time plus 7 minutes of additional time. However, they did they brilliantly as PA showed his experience to keep his backline in check, clearing any danger that came their way and Hall, Rhiney and Dutchie held the ball up in the corners excellently as well. Not to mention the big shift that all of the midfield and Cam Groom in goal put in, it was real team effort to see out the game and after 90+7 minutes the referee signalled full time and the Rovers were through to the next round after an excellent come back yet again!
Full Time: Barton Rovers 3-2 East Thurrock United
MOTM: The man of the match was Dutchie voted by our fans! There were lots of excellent performances out there and shouts for Grant and McKenzie to be the man of the match again but Dutchie worked his socks off and it was fully deserved!
Rovers win means that they will face MK Irish at home in the next round of the cup!