North Ferriby United 0
Forest Green Rovers 3
Ethan Pinnock 43
Charlie Clough 75
Christian Doidge 90+2
Half time: 0-1
Struggling Ferriby made leaders Forest Green work hard for this win. Once again, The Villagers put in a good performance against one of the division’s leading sides. However, this was the teams 11th blank sheet in 15 league games and their fifth in succession.
The team is creating chances but they are certainly not making the most of them and, to some extent, they are lacking a little luck.
For the third game in succession Ferriby were left unhappy with key refereeing decisions that went against them and affected the game.
Manager Steve Housham commented,
Another major decision has gone against us. Their player falls over and wins a free-kick from which they score. Decisions like that change the course of games. It’s frustrating.”
Forest Green had the better of the first 15 minutes and went close twice without really threatening Ferriby keeper Rory Watson. Rhys Murphy blazed over the bar from close-range when he was well-placed and Liam Noble fired over following a good three-man move.
Drissa Taore and Darren Carter were controlling midfield for the visitors. However they were constantly harried by Simon Russell and Danny Clarke, in particular and found it hard to create openings.
Rovers’ neat passing football always posed a threat throughout the game but with limited end results. Ferriby were generally left feeding off bits and pieces and did not force Sam Russell in to a save in the first-half.
The opening goal after 43 minutes was controversial. Carter seemed to fall over his own feet as he turned on the touchline. The referee, to most people’s surprise awarded a free-kick. Noble launched high in to the Ferriby goalmouth where Ethan Pinnock rose unchallenged to head home.
Ferriby finished the half with a Steve Brogan free-kick that curled just wide of the top corner
The second-half again saw Rovers start more quickly. However they did not really trouble Watson who had only two comfortable saves to make. Even so, Rovers looked more threatening for the first 20 minutes.
Ferriby then had their best spell of the match. Vinny Mukendi’s header went straight to keeper Russell. Ferriby’s shots lacked accuracy but they were unlucky twice in a minute. Reece Thompson had a shot cleared off the line and from the resulting corner Mark Gray’s downward header hit the ground and bounced over the bar.
Rovers clinched the game with a goal against the run of play after 75 minutes. Noble’s corner from the left was headed home in the six-yard box by Charlie Clough.
Ferriby did not threaten a goal after this but the visitors’ third goal was harsh on the home side. Elliott Frear broke through the middle and hit his shot against the post only for Christian Doidge to tap in to an empty goal.
“The worrying thing is that we are creating chances but not scoring. We are in a run of games against the top teams and we are playing well but when key decisions go against you it is frustrating.
“The players gave everything and I can’t ask for more from them. We are playing well against the top sides and we have to think that we will get points if we perform like that against the teams who are around us in the table.”
NFU: (4-1-3-2): Rory Watson ; Sam Topliss, Mark Gray, Jake Skelton , Steve Brogan , Connor Oliver , Simon Russell (Ross Armstrong 84),Danny Clarke, Reece Thompson, (Ryan Kendall 78), Vinny Mukendi , Kyle Wootton (Danny Emerton 69)
Subs not used: Alfons Fosu-Mensa, Ryan Fallowfield
Forest Green Rovers: Sam Russell , Dale Bennett , Dan Wishart7, Charlie Clough, Ethan Pinnock, Drissa Traore, Liam Noble, Darren Carter, Fabien Robert(Elliott Frear 69), Kieffer Moore, (Keanu Marsh-Brown ), Rhys Murphy 7(Christian Doidge )
Subs not used: Aarran Racine, Marcus Kelly