LiveRECAP: Gillingham 2 Doncaster Rovers 2: Rovers recover to earn point at Priestfield

Doncaster Rovers recovered from a shambolic start to earn a point at Gillingham.

Saturday, 20th March 2021, 12:00 pm
Updated Saturday, 20th March 2021, 5:10 pm
Gillingham's Priestfield Stadium. Photo: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

Some abysmal defending allowed Jordan Graham and Vadaine Oliver to put the Gills 2-0 up after just four minutes.

But Tom Anderson headed home after 19 minutes and James Coppinger’s smart finish four minutes later ultimately earned Rovers a share of the spoils and ended a sequence of five straight away defeats.

Recap all the action below.

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Gillingham v Doncaster Rovers

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Gillingham 2 Doncaster Rovers 2

Last updated: Saturday, 20 March, 2021, 15:47

3.47pm That’s the break

TWO minutes

Alex MacDonald drills on goal from the corner of the box but Louis Jones pushes it away well.

34min Interesting battle going on....

...in the technical areas.

Steve Evans and his assistant Paul Raynor are their usual vocal selves in the technical area - and their mood has not been improved by the way this game has gone.

Andy Butler has responded to this with a big grin on his face - something which Evans has taken exception to, asking him ‘who are you’ in a withering tone.

As expected, this brought even more laughter from the Rovers boss.

Matt Smith brilliantly carries the ball from half way to the edge of the box before sliding a pass into Fejiri Okenabirhie. He takes a touch but his shot takes a heavy deflection and the keeper gathers the loose ball. Very aggressive from Rovers.

30min From the ridiculous to the sublime

I challenge anyone to say they weren’t fearing the worst for Rovers after four minutes - particularly after their limp response to going behind at Oxford.

But the backlash to falling two goals down on this occasion has been excellent. They’ve moved the ball forward with pace and accuracy, as well as a welcome dose of directness at times.

And they look the more likely to do something at this stage after levelling up.

22min GGGGGGOOOOOOAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!!! ROVERS!!

THEY ARE LEVEL!!!

JAMES COPPINGER!!

Matt Smith sprayed a pass out to the left for Branden Horton, who powered forward after exchanging passes with Reece James. Horton centred and it looked like his ball was going to be cut out, only for it to roll out to James Coppinger who lashed into the bottom corner.

What a response!

18min GGGGGGGOOOOOAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!! ROVERS!

TOM ANDERSON powers in a header for Rovers!

James Coppinger hooked a cross into the box after a corner was cleared and Anderson rose superbly to loop a header into the far corner. Excellent header. Game on.

Omar Bogle sends a free kick into the wall from 25 yards

Jack Tucker heads wide from a corner for Gillingham.

12min Great through ball..but offside

James Coppinger took a brilliant touch and powered a ball through for Omar Bogle but the striker was flagged offside. Was definitely a close one.

Some signs of life on the ball for Rovers.

4min GOAL Gillingham

The hosts double their advantage inside four minutes as Vadaine Oliver powers in from a Ryan Jackson cross.

Awful, awful, awful.

2min GOAL Gillingham

Jordan Graham puts Gillingham ahead inside the first minute.

Disaster for Rovers and another awful goal to concede.

They lost possession cheaply in the middle of the park with John Akinde powering forward. He slid a ball out wide to Alex MacDonald. He crossed in low towards Kyle Dempsey who easily got in ahead of Tom Anderson. Dempsey saw his shot blocked but the ball rolled out to Graham who lashed through a crowd of players in.

So much poor defending in that goal and Rovers are fighting from behind already.

James Coppinger takes the kick-off

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