Flying Forest Green ease past Wrexham
A resounding home performance saw Forest Green romp to victory against Wrexham, writes Richard Joyce.
Goals from Dale Bennett, Liam Noble and Christian Doidge gave Rovers the win they deserved on a dominant afternoon at The New Lawn.
Bennett’s goal just before half time was followed up by Noble’s penalty after the break. Meanwhile leading marksman Doidge added to his tally for the season with a fantastic third.
Keen to gain revenge on a frustrating defeat at the Racecourse back in November, from the start Mark Cooper’s side were at it, and Chris Dunn was forced into action to keep a Noble shot out after just four minutes.
Darren Carter’s header from a Noble free kick later in the half slipped wide, and another chance from former Birmingham man Carter saw his free kick fly just off target before the half hour mark.
FGR kept up the pressure, and kept Dunn busy, when Noble again saw another hit saved following good work by Kaiyne Woolery.
A number of niggly fouls contributed to Rovers frustration for having not earned a first half lead, but the goal they were after would come just before half time.
Both teams scrapped for the ball in the Wrexham six-yard box following a set piece delivery that saw Woolery ease the ball into the path of Bennett, who kept his head to slot in the first.
Forest Green wouldn’t have to wait long to find themselves in the driving seat after half time.
Woolery was upended in the box, and Noble stepped up to confidently smash in from 12 yards, to double the score line.
Wrexham were indebted to their goalkeeper for a string of important saves that would keep the score line down as FGR eagerly fought to add to their lead.
The former Cambridge United goalkeeper saved from Doidge, and then produced a strong right hand to keep out a strike from Carter.
He couldn’t stop Doidge from netting Rovers third just after the hour mark. The FGR number nine scored with a wonderfully taken looping effort after he had raced to latch onto Noble’s forward ball.
In the hunt for more goals Cooper’s side piled on the pressure towards the end. Dunn again had to be at his best to keep out Carter’s left footed effort, while he stood up tall to save from Omar Bugiel after the German substitute had been put in down the left hand side.
Woolery was the next to try and add a fourth. His powerful run saw him have options to his right, but he elected to go alone, and saw his shot deflected behind for a corner in what would prove to be the final action of an afternoon full of positives at The New Lawn.
Report: Richard Joyce
Photo: Shane Healey/Pro Sports Images
Highlights: Hannah Worboys, Elliot Owens & Richard Joyce