Bristol Rovers 1 Oxford United 1 (4-3 aet)

7pm, Tuesday 16th November 2021
The Memorial Stadium
FA Cup First Round (Replay)

Preview

After the thrilling 2-2 draw in the previous game, The Gas welcome Oxford United to the Memorial Stadium for what promises to be an exciting evening of cup football under the lights.

Our visitors, Oxford United remain in sixth position in League One, and will be difficult opponents for The Gas once again. Their biggest threat is ex-Bristol Rovers forward Matty Taylor, who scored in the previous game. We will need to keep him quiet if we are to stand any chance of progression in this competition.

The Gas will be high in confidence following their excellent victory against League Two promotion candidates Northampton Town on Saturday, and will be looking to carry the momentum to Tuesday evening and beyond. I feel we are in a good place right now and will give Oxford a good match.

The reward for the winner is a home tie in the FA Cup Second Round against Sutton United.

Match Review

Bristol Rovers proceed to the second round of the FA Cup with a breaktaking emotional victory over Oxford United after an extra time thriller. Goals from Sam Finley<COMMA> Sion Spence x2 and a debut goal for Aaron Collins won this classic cup tie. The magic of the FA Cup is alive and kicking!

Wow! Just wow!

I don’t have the words to write a match report, I am just so overwhelmed with the emotion of it all.

That match had everything. I don’t think anybody in the stadium had anything left in the tank come the end, everything was left on the pitch. The team and us Gasheads gave everything. My throat is going to be so sore tomorrow morning 🙂

Oxford battered us for large periods of the game, but we dug deep and hung in there.

The Finley goal looked epic from my view in the South West Stand, Finley won the ball just in front of me, passed to Anderson who laid it off for Evans who then crossed for Finley to finish. Beautiful.

I felt we were good value for our 1-0 lead. Then Oxford got a soft penalty, and it was inevitable that Taylor was going to score.

1-1 was a good result for us, seeing as we absorbed a lot of pressure. Evans had what I thought was the winning goal right at the end, but the bulge of the net failed to happen.

At the end of normal time, that was a really good cup tie. I had no idea of the excitement that was to follow.

I honestly thought it was all over when Oxford scored two right at the start of extra time. The whole of the Memorial Stadium felt the same right before Spence scored his first. The ten minutes of quiet crowd instantly changed and the belief came flooding back. The Mem erupted and the tide had turned.

The final twenty minutes of that game were unlike any other I can remember for a long time. Oxford still kept battering us, but we suddenly had an effective counter attack game, and we punished them. First Aaron Collins chose the perfect time to open his goalscoring account for The Gas by scoring the equaliser and then Sion Spence dramatically won the game, just as penalties were looming.

Every single player on that pitch earned that victory. There was passion, commitment, desire, skill. Everything.

I don’t actually remember anything about the extra time goals, I will have to watch the highlights. For me, all I remember is celebrating goals like I have not done since Browner’s Left Foot sent us up from this division.

The scenes at the North end looked outstanding. I could see the limbs and the pitch invasion from a distance.

Ok, I did end up writing a match report.

Bring on Sutton United in the second round!

Saturday and Tranmere Rovers cannot come quick enough. It is fun being a Gashead again. It has been far too long…

UTG

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