Rampant Rovers hit six
THE team huddle after a rousing 6-1 victory projected a show of togetherness, but a surprising after-match prognosis from the team and manager David Hockaday displays how far Forest Green have come at this embryonic stage of the new season.
Rovers may have turned on the style in Derbyshire to bag an emphatic first Blue Square Bet Premier victory of the season, but Hockaday is demanding more from his inform outfit.
"It 's an impressive scoreline – and I am just not saying this – but they all said it when we had the team huddle at the end – we can all do so much better than that." said Hockaday.
" At 3-1 it wasn't comfortable and 6-1 flattered the hell out of us, but having said that to play at 50 per cent capacity and to win the game 6-1, we're delighted, but we can play much better than that."
The in demand Reece Styche scored twice, adding to earlier strikes from Jamie Turley and Charlie Griffin, a Theo Streete own goal and a Yan Klukowski rocket in stoppage time equalled their their previous biggest scoreline against Weymouth during Jim Harvey 's tenure.
In truth, Alfreton produced some schoolboy defending, but found Rovers at their clinical best.
Rovers could have been behind inside 10 seconds when Turley's back-pass put Matt Bulman under pressure and the goalkeeper's attempted clearance was charged down by Paul Clayton, who somehow fired over the inviting goal.
However, four minutes later a weak Alfreton clearance saw James Rowe pick out Kieron Forbes who saw his rasping volley blocked and the ball ran for Turley – grounded in the penalty area – to smartly clip home.
The goal tide continued on 13 minutes. A fine right-wing cross by Josh Law saw Streete leap above Turley and power a header into the net.
Rovers were back in front three minutes later thanks to wretched home marking, as Griffin ghosted free at the far post to meet Rowe's corner and bag his second goal in as many matches.
Alfreton's comical defending surfaced again as they went 3-1 down on 22 minutes, keeper Dan Lowson took a clumsy touch outside the box and Styche showed composure to finish from 30 yards.
The anticipated second half siege from the hosts failed to happen and their cause was not helped by having to play the final 20 minutes with 10 men, Anthony Wilson hobbling off injured after all three substitutions had been made.
And it was all over on 76 minutes, as Styche turned on the gas to reach Luke Graham's clearance and out-muscle the flat-footed Greg Young before smartly flicking the ball beyond the onrushing Lowson.
Two further goals came in added time, the first coming when Curtis McDonald's block ran to fellow substitute Robbie Matthews and his low cross was turned into his own net by the unfortunate Streete.
And Klukowski put the gloss on the day, bolting onto Rowe's diagonal pass and finishing with aplomb in the top corner.