Date:Saturday January 17 2009
St Mary's Stadium
Doncaster went to Southampton for a crucial relegation six pointer hoping to extend their winning league run to three games.
Bad news before kick off was that Paul Heffernan was ill with a virus and was replaced by Lewis Guy in the starting line up.
For a game that was being played by two teams currently in the relegation places it was a very open game with both clubs having quite a few chances to score in the first half.
Southampton were quick to put Rovers under pressure in the opening minutes with successive corners but both came to nothing.
Rovers then had three chances to take the lead in quick succession, Lewis Guy was put through on goal but his effort was put out for a corner by Davis in the Southampton goal. From the resulting corner, firstly Sam Hird`s left foot shot was parried away by Davis and when the ball was swung back in Mills put just wide of the post.
Southampton then went straight to the other end and only a fantastic save by Sullivan kept out Saganowski`s effort.
Both sides continued to create chances and Holmes missed a great chance for the hosts when at the far post unmarked he shot wide.
Coppinger almost gave Rovers the lead in spectacular fashion when Davis punched out only to the edge of the area and Coppinger`s overhead kick went just wide of the post.
Coppinger had another chance soon after when through on goal but once again Davis saved the saints with a good save.
The half time whistle went with both sides contributing to a highly enjoyable first forty five minutes.
Rovers broke the deadlock within the first sixty seconds of the second half, Woods was put through on goal and he coolly slotted past Davis to give the Rovers a crucial lead.
Guy almost had the chance to increase Rovers lead shortly afterwards when an almighty pile up between the Southampton keeper and two defenders almost let him in but a home defender recovered to clear.
Coppinger was causing Southampton all sorts of problems and was at the heart of all Rovers good attacks, after good work he created an opening for himself which Davis once again was equal too with a good save.
At the other end Sullivan was also having an outstanding game and two fantastic saves in quick succession kept Rovers lead intact.
Rovers clinched the game with just under ten minutes remaining, after excellent work by both Wellens and Coppinger in a tight position Coppinger found himself in space, his shot somehow found its way into an empty net with what looked like a huge deflection of a saints player.
Rovers were now in cruise control and the Southampton fans were quick to leave the stadium, those that did stay showed their anger at the clubs board and scuffles broke out between home fans and stewards.
Southampton snatched a goal back in stoppage time by Saganowski to give Rovers fans a few nervous moments but they clung on to claim a vital three points.
With the teams directly above them in the table winning Rovers stay in the bottom three, there are now only six points separating them and fifteenth place Plymouth with Rovers having a game in hand on a number of these teams.
Next up for Rovers in the league is a local derby at Sheffield United on the 27th before another crucial six pointer at home against Norwich City.
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Date:Saturday January 17 2009
|15. Leyton Orient||13||3||6||4||0||15|
|18. Port Vale||14||3||4||7||-6||13|
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