Match Report

 

Sat 28 Apr 12

The U's hit four goals for the fifth time this season to finish their home campaign on a high in a match that saw five goals in an entertaining second half.

John Ward's men started as they meant to go on as Ian Henderson headed them in front after just three minutes.

And, for the first time since the win over Charlton, they went on to grab further goals to extend their advantage and send their fans home with a big smile on their face.

They got four, hit the woodwork twice and played well, despite the sodden conditions.

The last home game of the season saw four changes from last week's draw away to Bournemouth. Ben Williams, Lloyd James, Michael Rose and Kayode Odejayi came into the side.

It was a bright start from the U's as they found themselves 1-0 up within the first 5 minutes. A cross from Brian Wilson down the right found Ian Henderson six yards from goal and he made no mistake, placing his header past the Tranmere keeper.

The U's were up for it and almost grabbed a second as Player of the Season, Kayode Odejayi did well to get to the byline before firing in a low cross, the ball fell to Antony Wordsworth but keeper Coughlin did well to deny the U's man. The ball also fell kindly to Lloyd James but his goal bound effort was blocked by Henderson.

Kayode Odejayi went into the book for a tussle with Ian Goodison, an incident which also saw the Tranmere man receive a caution.

Tranmere had a fantastic opportunity to make it level, the ball fell to Andy Robinson at the back post, but the former Swansea man fluffed his lines as he had the goal at his mercy.

A neat bit of skill from Odejayi on the edge of the box allowed the striker to tee up Michael Rose but Rose elected to try and pass the ball instead of shooting with his weaker right foot, therefore spurning the opportunity.

On 34 minutes Rovers almost levelled things up Andy Welsh whipped in a cross but Tom Eastman was on hand to clear away for a corner.

Lloyd James found Andy Bond in acres of space in the middle, Bond fired at goal but Goodison blocked the midfielder's effort.

Jake Cassidy broke the offside trap for Rovers but Wilson got back to make a last ditch tackle to deny the Rovers man an effort on goal.

Into the second half and the U's started brightly once again and within two minutes of the restart found themselves 2-0 up.

A superb cross from Lloyd James was met by Tom Eastman at the back post who headed past Coughlin. It was the defender's third goal for the U's but his first here at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.

7 minutes into the second half and Rovers pulled one back through James Wallace's long range strike, which skidded off the greasy surface and into the bottom corner.

Shortly after the U's made their first change of the afternoon as Odejyai was replaced by Steven Gillespie.

Gillespie almost made an instant impact as he picked the ball up from a Wilson cross, however he saw his strike deflected behind for a corner.

Henderson broke down the left but his cross was deflected away from Gillespie who was lurking in the middle.

Andy Bond tested the hands of Coughlin as Henderson played him in, but the Coughlin pushed the ball away for a corner.

From the resulting corner, Magnus Okuonghae made it 3-1 as his header found its way past Coughlin from Rose's superb corner.

The U's were playing with confidence and James looked to grab a fourth but his long range effort ended up going over the Rovers goal.

Ben Williams spilled a shot from Tiriyaki resulting in a corner, and from that Rovers got back into it as a goal mouth scramble resulted in the ball being bundled home by Akins after 62 minutes.

Robinson handled from Bond's cross, allowing Rose to swing the ball in from a set piece once again.

This time his cross was cleared by Bakayogo at the near post.

Rovers made a change as Lucas Akins was replaced by Martin Devaney.

Andy Robinson also made way forĀ Adam McGurk.

Gillespie was forced off with 12 minutes to go to be replaced by Freddie Sears.

With 7 minutes left, the U's made it 4-2 with a well worked goal. James had time and space to pick out Sears who cut inside from the left and fired past Coughlin to grab his second goal for the
U's.

It was a special for one U's player as 19 year old Bradley Hamilton made his senior debut for the club coming on for Andy Bond with 5 minutes to go.

Henderson almost grabbed a fifth as his header came back off the upright from a James cross.

It was an entertaining afternoon at the Weston Homes as the U's rounded of the remainder of their home games with a convincing 4-2 win.

    Data provided by Press Association

    Recent Match Reports