» Strik­ers on song as Robins keep up strong start

Robins main­tain strong start with con­vinc­ing win over Carlisle,

Gloucestershire Echo - - FRONT PAGE - Jon PALMER gloslives­[email protected]­plc.com

Grant Mccann looks to have loaned for­mer club a real gem

There were plenty of en­cour­ag­ing per­for­mances in the 2-0 win over Carlisle United on Tues­day night, but Jacob Greaves’ home de­but was an­other clear il­lus­tra­tion of the 18-year-old’s pre­co­cious tal­ent.

Grant Mccann was 20 when he joined the Robins on loan from West Ham United, quickly es­tab­lish­ing him­self in the side at left-back in place of the long term in­jury ab­sen­tee Jamie Vic­tory.

Even­tu­ally switch­ing to mid­field, North­ern Ire­land in­ter­na­tional Mccann went on to be­come one of the club’s all-time greats af­ter an­other loan spell and sub­se­quent per­ma­nent switch, be­fore play­ing at a higher level with Barns­ley, Scun­thorpe United and Peter­bor­ough United.

He may not have been man­ager of Hull City for very long, but he clearly knows his left-sided de­fend­ers be­cause Greaves has looked com­pletely at home in his first taste of se­nior foot­ball.

Michael Duff has al­ready backed him to be play­ing reg­u­larly in the Cham­pi­onship within two years and based on his per­for­mances for Chel­tenham so far, it is easy to see why.

Cen­tre for­wards off the mark

Gavin Reilly was close to open­ing his scor­ing ac­count for his loan club in the goal­less draw at More­cambe on Satur­day, fir­ing wide from a good po­si­tion af­ter a long throw from Ben Tozer be­fore half-time.

On Tues­day the Bris­tol Rovers loa­nee’s first half dis­play fully mer­ited a goal and it duly ar­rived in the 15th minute af­ter a clever cor­ner rou­tine, which was de­signed to set up Jake Doyle­hayes for a shot.

The As­ton Villa loan mid­fielder was closed down quickly, but had the com­po­sure to beat a man and de­liver a cross, al­low­ing Reilly to nod past Adam Collin and de­flate Carlisle, who fell apart af­ter con­ced­ing the opener af­ter a solid enough start.

There was no chance of Reilly’s strike part­ner Var­ney go­ing long with­out scor­ing and he got in on the act in the 45th minute.

Var­ney re­ceived a fine pass from the re­turn­ing Chris Cle­ments and fin­ished con­fi­dently, with Carlisle’s claims of hand­ball as he brought the ball down ig­nored by ref­eree Will Fin­nie.

It has been said many times be­fore, but Var­ney’s sign­ing last Septem­ber was a mas­ter­stoke by Duff for a va­ri­ety of rea­sons.

Not only is he as hun­gry for goals as ever as his 37th birthday approaches, he is fit and en­thu­si­as­tic enough to ren­der men­tions of his age largely ir­rel­e­vant.

Per­haps equally as im­por­tant is his un­de­ni­able in­flu­ence on the pitch and in the dress­ing room and be­cause in a pre­dom­i­nantly youth­ful group, there are not many bet­ter role mod­els.

» New singing sec­tion cre­ates carnival at­mos­phere

The group of sup­port­ers as­sem­bled in block seven of the Colin Farmer Stand made them­selves heard from the first whis­tle through un­til full-time against Carlisle.

They have re­lo­cated from other ar­eas of the ground, com­plete with a new ban­ner and a drum sup­plied by as­so­ciate di­rec­tor Mark Cuzner.

The 1887 Red Army were also be­hind the huge Justin Ed­in­burgh flag dis

Gavin Reilly cel­e­brates theopen­ing goal with his team­mates

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