Davenport on target as Rovers Under-23s beat Liverpool

Davenport on target as Rovers Under-23s beat Liverpool 8664886

Jacob Davenport stepped up his comeback to action with 90 minutes, and a goal, as Rovers Under-23s recorded a first Premier League 2 win of the season against Liverpool.

The summer signing made a third appearance for Damien Johnson’s side and will now look to break in to the first-team squad after a frustrating start to life at Ewood Park.

He fired Rovers ahead in the sixth minute with a crisp 20-yarder which found the bottom corner as the hosts bright start was rewarded.

Jack Evans doubled their advantage in the 18th minute, before being pegged back just after the hour mark by Michael Virtue’s header and finished the game with 10 men.

They made a chance to make sure of the win in injury time when Butterworth missed from the penalty spot after being brought down, but held on for a first league win. 

Ryan Nyambe, who has missed the last month with a hamstring injury, was named in a strong Rovers side which included striker Joe Nuttall.

And they were on the front foot from the first whistle, the impressive Brad Lyons winning a free-kick from which Joe Grayson drew a fine save from Liverpool goalkeeper Kamil Grabara.

He would make an even better stop to stop Neco Williams turning in to his own net from a right-wing Lyons cross.

After Davenport had fired Rovers ahead, they went in search of a second which arrived in the 18th minute.

Wing-back Evans made it two goals in two games as he turned in from a tight angle after Okera Simmonds flicked a Nyambe cross goalwards.

With confidence high, Rovers were a yard sharper to the ball, and Evans fired a shot over the bar from 25 yards shortly afterwards.

Dam Butterworth would go close before the break, firing wide after racing on to a Nyambe throughball, before the visitors went within inches of a route back in to the game.

Liam Millar headed over unmarked from six yards before a curling Adam Lewis effort had Oli Byrne scrambling across goal, only to narrowly miss the far post.

Searching for a way back in to the game, Liverpool started the brighter, but Byrne remained untroubled, though their pressure did see defenders Charley Doyle and Jack Evans go in to the book.

After Evans pulled back Bobby Adekanye, Lewis stepped over a free-kick from the angle of the box, bending it over the Rovers wall with his left foot, but was denied by the crossbar.

Rovers had soaked up plenty of early pressure though, and were pegged back in the 62nd minute. Rafael Camacho’s strike was tipped on to the bar by an excellent Byrne save, but as the ball looped up, Liverpool captain Virtue was first to the ball to head home.

Nyambe came through 65 minutes on his injury return, before being replaced by John Buckley, but Rovers couldn’t gain their fluency from the first half as they continued to be pressed back.

They were fighting hard to maintain their lead, but had to play the final five minutes with a man short as Evans was sent off for a second yellow card for pulling back Adekanye after the linesman flagged for a shirt pull which the referee had initially waved away.

From the resulting free kick Lewis was denied an equaliser as his free kick smacked the post as Roves survived.

Rovers had to see out five added minutes, but did so, to earn a first league win after promotion, despite Butterworth’s late penalty miss. 

Rovers: Byrne, Nyambe (Buckley, 65), Doyle, Carter, Grayson, Evans, Lyons, Davenport, Butterworth, Simmonds (Mols, 57), Nuttall

Subs: Vale, Eastham, Candlin

Liverpool: Grabara, Williams, Lewis, Johnstone, Garcia, Chirivella, Adekanye, Virtue, Millar (McAuley, 70), Jones, Camacho

Subs: McKenzie-Lyle, Masterson, Christie-Davies, Gallacher

Source : LancashireTelegraph

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