Poor showing ends 2017/18 season
Rovers last game of an up and down 2017/18 season ended with a heavy loss at the hands of promotion chasing Hayes & Yeading on Saturday. A depleted squad due to injuries and an end of season fixture pile up forced manager Tony Fontenelle to juggle the pack one last time and name himself as a substitute. With the hosts sitting in 4th place in the league for a reason showed from the off with some sublime passing moves on the pristine carpet at the Skyex stadium. It wasn’t long before Matt Finlay in the Rovers goal had to be on his toes to snuff out a Duncan Culley advance. Rovers were making hard work of things with moves littered with sloppy tired passes that gave the initiative away cheaply putting them under more pressure. Cully got another shot away that stung Finlays hands in the rovers goal but attention switched to the other end as Barton found some momentum with Drew Phillips have a decent effort parried away only for Dan Jarvis’s goal bound effort to be turned round the corner. That was to be Rovers best and maybe only golden spell of the game as Hayes took full control or proceedings. Laste Dombaxe found ample space in Bartons 18 yard box and forced in an effort via the far post and on 40 mins that man Culley made amends for his earlier miss and slotted home past the stranded Finlay to give the hosts a 2-o lead at the break.
More of the same in the 2nd half as Hayes went all out to increase their goal difference and have a chance at automatic promotion if they lost in the play off final but had the best points per game of all step 4 teams. They went about that task with vigour and fight with a brace from Spyros Mentis making it 4-0 and a final goal on 88 mins by Manny Duku piling on Rovers misery and a 5-0 last day pummelling.
Rovers manager Fontenelle commented after the game “ That was just one game to far for the whole squad after the fixtures we have played in the last 14 days. We were down to bare bones and its been a long trying season for all the boys but we showed character today not to just totally roll over. Credit to Hayes the fought for every thing and wanted as bigger win as they could get, good luck to them in the play offs. For us its now back to the drawing board, a quick sit down with some of the lads who we want to retain for next season then the process of assembling a squad to push on. Its not been a great year but we have seen some decent young lads grow which bodes well for the future”