Hardy Rovers win it late on at Barrow
Manny Monthe’s stoppage time header helped Forest Green become only the second team this season to win at Barrow’s Holker Street, writes Richard Joyce.
The powerful substitute glanced home the impressive Liam Noble’s late corner to help Rovers move within a point of the league leaders.
Noble’s early free kick had given FGR a great advantage at the start. But having been repeatedly pegged back, goals from Christian Doidge and Monthe got the job done right at the death.
Noble’s sixth minute free kick marked the perfect opening for Forest Green. After Rob Sinclair had been brought down the Rovers skipper stepped up and curled a wonderful effort past the reach of former Cheltenham Town goalkeeper Jon Flatt to break the deadlock early on.
A cautioned tackle from Alex Ray-Harvey brought the two teams to blows midway through a quiet half that saw the hosts work an impressive first opportunity on the half hour mark – Akil Wright saw his volley from Danny Livesey’s cross fall wide though.
The hosts would draw parity shortly after. Ray-Harvey whipped a dangerous free kick into the box, and Richie Bennett got a final deft touch to send the ball into the back of the net.
Barrow’s goal scorer looked to score again before half time, but his strike from distance bounced wide, while Kaiyne Woolery’s dash down the middle when latching onto a long ball ended with the Wigan loanee lobbing the ball over.
The second half similarly to the opening 45 minutes lacked spark. Dan Wishart’s run forward on 55 minutes ended in his shot going out for a corner, and Noble’s volley from the subsequent set piece was deflected away by Livesey.
Neither team looked close to finding the games next goal, but it would come, and it came the way of FGR when midway through the half Doidge bagged his 15th of the campaign.
Noble’s inch perfect free kick from the right was swooped wonderfully into the Barrow box where Doidge was on hand to stoop and head in.
Wright tried to hit back for Barrow with a shot that went wide, but the hosts were struggling to develop opportunities.
They did get handed a good chance on 82 minutes when they were awarded a free kick just outside the Forest Green area. However substitute Andy Haworth’s effort was pushed away by Sam Russell.
They would however level when a dubiously awarded penalty towards the end handed the home side a late opportunity to claim a point.
Hannah stepped up from 12 yards, but saw his effort saved by Russell, however the follow up landed centrally in the six-yard box and he knocked in the rebound.
The late drama did not end there. Monthe became the hero as a stoppage time corner saw the three points fall into the hands of FGR.
Noble claimed his second assist of the day with his corner that saw Monthe plant the winning goal past Flatt to wrap up a fine day on the road for Mark Cooper's men.
Report: Richard Joyce
Photo: Mark Pollitt/Pro Sports Images