Rovers sink Eagles
Shiels & Hayter see off Eagles
Last Updated: 25/04/09 6:28pm
Hayter: On the mark
Doncaster ended their home campaign with a 2-0 win over Crystal Palace at the Keepmoat Stadium.
Goals from Dean Shiels - his first goal for the club - and James Hayter gave Rovers the points to help them move above Palace in the table.
Palace will feel aggrieved to have left the Keepmoat Stadium empty-handed as they were denied by the woodwork three times in the opening period, with
Johannes Ertl, Neil Danns and Anthony Stokes all hitting the post. Stokes,
meanwhile, also had a goal disallowed with the score at 1-0.
The victory for Rovers sees them claim their first home win since the beginning
of March and moves them into the top half, while Palace have won just one of
their last eight games and they slip to 14th position in the league.
The game began in slow fashion and had all the hallmarks of two sides with
nothing to play for contesting a drab end-of-season affair.
WoodworkHowever, after 20 minutes the game burst into life and Palace hit the woodwork twice inside a minute.
First, Nick Carle curled in a tempting free-kick that was met by defender Ertl,
who crashed his header into the post.
When Danns picked up the loose ball, he weaved through the Rovers defence and fired in a shot that cannoned off the other post.
The visitors continued their domination and were denied by the post for a third
time when Stokes cut in from the left and his curling effort beat the dive of
Neil Sullivan and hit the upright.
OpenerThen, with the first half drawing to a close, Doncaster took the lead with their first meaningful effort. Richie Wellens was at the forefront of some intricate play down the left and he slipped in Shiels, who broke clear and slotted home past Julian Speroni.
Palace found life difficult at the start of the second period and struggled to
maintain their attacking threat until Danns had a 12-yard effort well saved by
Palace thought that they had finally breached the Rovers defence when Nathaniel Clyne broke down the right and crossed for Stokes who headed home, only for the goal to be chalked off for offside.
With 20 minutes remaining the game opened up and with Palace searching for a goal, Doncaster began to exploit the gaps in the visitor's defence and John Spicer ballooned his effort over from a good position inside the area.
However, Spicer was not made to pay for that miss as Rovers doubled their
advantage with their next attack after 75 minutes. Waide Fairhurst fed Hayter,
who rifled in a rising shot on the turn past the helpless Speroni to put the game to bed.
Palace offered very little in response, with Stokes sending a long-range effort
just wide, but Speroni produced a fine save to deny Martin Woods as Sean
O'Driscoll's side coasted to the three points.
Sky Bet Championship
Sat 25th Apr
Blackpool1 - 1N Forest
Bristol C1 - 1Sheff Wed
Cardiff0 - 3Ipswich
Sheff Utd1 - 0Swansea
Southampton2 - 2Burnley
Barnsley1 - 1Wolves
Coventry2 - 3Watford
Derby1 - 0Charlton
QPR0 - 0Plymouth
Doncaster2 - 0C Palace
Birmingham1 - 2Preston
Sky Bet Championship
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