STOPPER HOLY IS THE GILLS’ SAVIOUR
DONCASTER Rovers boss Darren Ferguson admitted that it was a case of two points dropped as his side were held to a goalless draw by Gillingham.
The hosts hit the woodwork and forced a number of saves from man-of-the-match Thomas Holy in the Gillingham goal.
But they couldn’t find the crucial breakthrough and it left a sour taste in Ferguson’s mouth.
“It’s a game we should’ve won,” said Ferguson. “For the majority of it, I was very pleased with the performance.
“It is two points dropped but a lot of the stuff I wanted, we did very well. It wasn’t a case that we didn’t create chances.
“The most important thing is that we didn’t get the result. We just didn’t get the rub of the green and their keeper has made three fantastic saves.
“The Gillingham players are all overjoyed with getting a point. We dominated for large periods. it was a game very similar to last season but we just couldn’t get the goals.”
Doncaster nearly took the lead inside the opening three minutes but Luke O’Neill got back to clear Liam Mandeville’s dinked effort off the line.
It took until midway through the first half for Rovers’ second chance despite their dominance as Matty Blair was denied by Holy after being played behind the Gills defence by James Coppinger.
At the other end, Connor Ogilvie’s volley squirmed under Ian Lawlor and onto the post before Gabriel Zakuani’s close-range header was brilliantly stopped by the Rovers keeper from the resulting corner.
Danny Andrew responded with a 25-yard piledriver which was wellstopped by Holy before the Gills goalie pulled off another outstanding save to deny Andy Butler’s early secondhalf header.
John Marquis was the next to have a go after nutmegging his man on the left wing, but his curling effort fell wide of the mark before the same man was stopped from six yards out.
Ben Whiteman went even closer to the opening goal but his 30-yard half-volley cannoned off the crossbar as Doncaster were forced to settle for a point.
Gills boss Ady Pennock heaped praise on keeper Holy after picking up a point on opening day.
“I’m not going to say he’s [Holy] not going to make mistakes because he’s human and people make mistakes,” said Pennock. “But why not give him a pat on the back because he was outstanding.
“Hopefully, that will give him a lot of confidence.
“Let’s hope he gets a lot of praise from the people who are knocking him.
“The new players have come into the defence and I thought they were outstanding.
“I love clean sheets. We’ve come to a tough place but we really stood our own and we had chances as well. Their keeper made a few fantastic saves.”
BATTLEFIELD: Doncaster forward John Marquis, centre, finds himself crowded by Gillingham’s Connor Ogilvie and Billy Bingham