BRISTOL ROVERS MATCH REPORT

Broom scores to help sweep Weston aside

Ryan Broom scored to deny Marc McGregor his first victory as Seagulls manager, with Rory Gaffney and Ellis Harrison also getting on the score-sheet to see off a positive Weston side.

Rovers started strongly, with their first-half skipper Ollie Clarke firing comfortably into the arms of Weston’s keeper Luke Purnell. Summer signing Liam Sercombe then saw his side-footed volley from a Daniel Leadbitter cross again go straight into Purnell’s arms on 10 minutes.

Purnell continued to play with the concentration levels of last season, when a lovely disguised ball from Billy Bodin found Sercombe in on goal, but his shot was saved low down to Purnell’s left, before being hacked away to safety.

Weston saw all their good work undone though two minutes afterwards, with Bodin being the architect. His run through the Weston defence set up Gaffney just inside the box, and he managed to slip the ball under Purnell’s outstretched arm and into the corner to break the deadlock.

Bodin continued to be a thorn in the side of Weston’s centre-back pairing of Jamie Laird and Jake Lee, seeing his shot saved by Purnell before driving inches wide of the post.

Just before the break, Jason Pope made a foray forward from right-back and fired wide while in a good position. The sides went into the break at 0 – 1 to the visitors, Bristol Rovers.

Weston came out seeking an equaliser and moments after the second half had begun, Pope’s low cut-back was laid off by Jacob Cane for impressive trialist Gerard Welch, who smacked a shot from the edge of the box against the crossbar, with Adam Smith beaten.

Rovers continued to attack, with Ellis Harrison and Stuart Sinclair blazing efforts high and wide of the goal when getting a sight of Purnell’s net. Luke Purnell was called into action again when half-time substitute Ryan Broom got in behind the defence, but was denied by the onrushing Weston shot-stopper.

Harrison made it 2-0 midway through the second half when a cross from Michael Kelly was nodded home, with substitute trialist Jordan Ricketts then hitting a shot into the side-netting.

Broom sealed the win 12 minutes from time when a low cross was flicked home by a back-heel from the former Taunton Town and Bath City loanee, to make the final score 3-0.

FT: Weston 0-3 Bristol Rovers (Gaffney 27, Harrison 64, Broom 78)

MOTM: Gerard Welch – Assured in possession, good in the tackle and certainly a trialist who caught the eye in Weston’s defeat, the Seagulls supporters will hope to see more of the central midfielder over the course of Pre-season!

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