STOKE A FRIGHT

Wal­ters’ stun­ner ends Fergie hopes

The Football League Paper - - FA CUP THIRD ROUND -

be­fore squar­ing for Tyson who, at the se­cond at­tempt, fired the ball home.

In an end-to-end en­counter, Mame Bi­ram Diouf then came close with a half-vol­ley on the turn but Thorsten Stuck­mann did well to get down and hold on. Conor Grant came within inches of fir­ing the hosts into the lead on 50 min­utes, but his low ef­fort shaved the out­side of the post.

The Pot­ters fi­nally tight­ened their grip and, af­ter Crouch some­how missed an open goal from two­yards out, Wal­ters fired them into the lead again on 56 min­utes.

The Re­pub­lic of Ire­land in­ter­na­tional picked up pos­ses­sion on the edge of the box be­fore he su­perbly ri­fled the ball into the top cor­ner.

As Rovers pressed there­after, so Stoke be­came more dan­ger­ous on the counter-at­tack. Diouf got up well to win a driven Char­lie Adam cor­ner but the striker’s header was well saved by Stuck­mann.

With the clock tick­ing down, Andy But­ler clipped the bar with a header be­fore Tyson spurned a chance to force a re­play. Af­ter get­ting on to a knock-down on the edge of the six-yard box, the for­ward could only turn his snap shot over the bar.

If that wasn’t enough heart­break for the vo­cal home faith­ful - then what came next cer­tainly was.With sec­onds left of in­jury time, But­ler again stole in at the back-post and looked cer­tain to score. But the cen­tre-back’s brave header flew inches over the bar.

Stoke boss Mark Hughes said: “We rode our luck a bit and on an­other day Don­caster may have been in the next round.

“All in all it was a pleas­ing day be­cause it was a good cup tie and we are thank­ful to be in the hat for the next round.We gave a few of our play­ers a rest be­cause it has been a busy pe­riod and we were ok – we man­aged to get the job done.

“It took two qual­ity goals to take the tie away from them. I think Don­caster come out of this with a lot of credit but Wal­ters’ goal was good enough to win any tie.”

THREAT: Don­caster’s Andy But­ler fires in a shot

STAR MAN PAUL KEE­GAN Don­caster

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