With a howling wind blowing end to end, the coin toss to decide ends proved crucial when Rovers made the trip up the A1 for this latest league fixture. Rovers captain Victor Osobu called correctly and opted to play with the wind first half. Rovers midfielder Nathan Tshikuna was first to try his luck but his shot from outside the box ballooned way over after 6 minutes. However, Rovers taking the lead was only delayed two minutes when striker Goldy Capela capitalised on a slack piece of Yaxley defending to fire Rovers ahead. Tshikuna ought to have doubled Rovers lead on 10 minutes but his shot was well blocked by home keeper Aaaron Butcher. Rovers keeper Niall Cooper kept out a goal-bound Dan Cotton shot on 13 minutes before his team-mate Frazer Garner shot wildly over from good position two minutes later. Tshikuna then worked himself some space on the edge of the Yaxley area before firing a thunderbolt home to double the Rovers lead on 17 minutes. Midfielder Dean Dummett and Osobu had efforts at goal before Cooper kept the yaxley score-sheet blank with another fine save then, with 29 minutes gone, Dummett again found himself space in the inside right channel and he made the most of that to fire e Rovers three up with 29 minutes gone. In quick succession both Charlie Smith and Dummett again had scoring opportunities but failed to convert before Capela found himself in the clear but failed to find the back of the net with only the keeper to beat when his shot rolled wide. Rovers weren’t done though and, when Dummett had his heels clicked on 42 minutes, the referee decided to award a penalty kick which Tshikuna fired in with aplomb to put Rovers four up at half-time.
The expected second half Yaxley onslaught failed to materialise with the home side failing to find any concerted possession football to trouble Rovers. Rather it was Rovers looking more likely to score with efforts by both Capela and Connor Furlong on 54 and 55 minutes coming close to increasing the away side’s lead. Yaxley’s Sam Bennett and Liam Hook had long-range efforts comfortably fielded by Cooper before Capela had another effort smothered on the line by Yaxley’s Butcher on the hour mark. Yaxley did exert some pressure but, once again, Cooper was up to the job in tipping over another Bennett effort on 65 minutes but two minutes later Yaxley opened their account when Rovers old boy Dan Jarvis thumped one home. This setback didn’t deter Rovers and, after Dummett again went close to scoring his second, up popped Capela to restore Rovers 4-goal lead on 78 minutes. A frantic closing 12 minutes plus added time saw Rovers centre-back Lewis Thomas clear off the line, Yaxley get a penalty award of their own slotted home by Bennett to reduce the arrears on 86 minutes, followed three minutes later by a second goal for Yaxley’s Jarvis this one a cracker on 89 minutes. The icing on the cake and the points were secured when midfielder and man of the match Charlie Smith fired home a peach of a free-kick on 90 minutes only to see Yaxley substitute Scott Waumsley score in added time. A ten-goal thriller that saw one of Rovers best team displays of the season and a fantastic advert for non-league football.
Final Score: Yaxley FC 4 (Jarvis 67 & 89, Bennet Pen 86, Waumsley 89) Barton Rovers 6 (Capela 8 & 78, Tshikuna 17 & Pen 43, Dummett 29, Smith 90)
Rovers Team: Cooper, Jibodu (Palmer 87), Ward, Smith, Thomas, Phelan, Osobu, Dummett, Capela (Williams 85), Tshikuna (Carey-Morrell 76), Furlong.
Rovers MOM: Charlie Smith