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REVIEW | Forest Green Rovers 1-1 Wrexham AFC

A point salvaged late at the Bolt New Lawn

29 February 2024


REVIEW | Forest Green Rovers 1-1 Wrexham AFC

A point salvaged late at the Bolt New Lawn

29 February 2024

A moment of madness from Jamie Robson led to Paul Mullin equalising from the spot in added time, as Wrexham drew with Forest Green Rovers.

In what marked a third long away day for Wrexham on the bounce, it was always going to be a tough affair in Gloucestershire. 

Winning their first two games of the year in the three fixtures prior, the home side fighting against relegation had a real bee in their bonnet. 

For the entire ninety minutes, Steve Cotterill bellowed out instructions to his players across a misty Bolt New Lawn in Nailsworth, but this didn’t prevent the red mist from descending onto Robson. 

In the second minute of added time, James McClean’s former Republic of Ireland teammate, Richard Keogh, collided into FGR’s emergency loanee goalkeeper Vicente Reyes. 

The Norwich City loanee then dropped the ball into the path of Mullin. Robson decided that the best course of action would be to fling his legs out to try and prevent the forthcoming shot. 

Unsuprisingly, he instead caught Mullin high up on the shin with his studs and was a lucky man not to see red... from the referee at least. 

Unlike the 100th minute penalty miss away to Accrington Stanley, Mullin thumped a raising ball into the back of Reyes’ net to secure a point for Phil Parkinson’s men. 

Relief somewhat poured out across the travelling Wrexham fans, as the Red Dragons had salvaged a point in what had been a disappointing ninety minutes. 

A ninety minutes which got off to the "worst possible start", as Luke Young’s slack touch in the middle of the park was swept up by Emmanuel Osadeb in the third minute.

Charging forward, the forward received a return pass off Christian Doidge. Already knowing that Arthur Okonkwo was in no-man's land, Osadebe curled an early ball past the Wrexham keeper to give the relegation placed side the lead. 

Forest Green thus sat on their goal and counter attacked with aggression, whenever the opportunity arose. 

Parkinson added post-match: “We got off to the worst possible start against a team who were always going to drop behind the ball into a low block.” 

To this, Parkinson’s side controlled the game from within Forest Green’s half, with 75% of the ball and 685 passes completed.

Little was made of this domination though, even with Ryan Barnett’s forays down the right-hand side.  

The standout player for Wrexham was actually Max Cleworth, who once again dealt with any situation that came his way. 

Whether it be an aerial duel, a one-on-one or standing up a player charging at him, the young centre back seems to forever have the answers. 

Parkinson said: “It is his first taste of league football, and it’s a lot harder than the National League. He [Cleworth] has shown a great maturity in his performances.” 

With another loss beckoning, the chance to equalise in the 93rd minute was fortuitous. One couldn’t help but feel sorry for Forest Green, who had defended with such heart for the better part of ninety minutes. 

Thankfully, three homes games lie on the horizon in our next four games, with Accrington Stanley making the trip to the STōK Cae Ras this Saturday. 

Being three points of Mansfield Town in top spot, Wrexham could go top with a win over the Lancashire side. 

With only two months remaining of the Sky Bet League Two season, it is well and truly crunch time. 

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