Stevenage 2-2 Tranmere: Report

Easter is a time symbolic with resurrection, and Tranmere are going to have breathe more life into their season after they stayed in the League Two relegation zone following a 2-2 draw with Stevenage.

Rovers had led for a large portion of the game after Kayode Odejayi’s booming header put them 2-1 up before the break.

But a second half equaliser earned Stevenage a point that means the Prenton Park outfit remain one point from safety as little changed at the bottom of the table.

Micky Adams made just one change from the draw with Wimbledon last week as he looked to capitalise on the momentum of George Green’s late equaliser.

Rory Donnelly dropped out of the starting line up as Rob Taylor returned after injury, whilst Peter Brezovan retained his place in goal, despite Owain Fon Williams coming back from international duty.

However, the ‘keeper was left red faced after just three minutes as Stevenage took the lead.

The hosts attacked down the Rovers left, and some good interplay resulted in a Chris Whelpdale cross being knocked out of play.

Ben Kennedy swung in the resulting corner and Brezovan was quickly off his line to try and claim it.

However, Bira Dembele beat the giant stopper to the ball and easily nodded home nodded into the empty net.

Tranmere looked to respond quickly as Michael Ihiekwe saw a header saved.

But on the whole, Micky Adams’ side could barely get out of their own half as they struggled to retain possession and quickly found themselves under pressure after any danger was cleared.

The visiting defence, buoyed on by a supportive travelling band of the Super White Army, breathed a sigh of relief on twelve minutes when Jack Jebb volleyed off target from 25-yards.

Brezovan then saw a hoof forward cannon off Kennedy and out of play before he finally eased his nerves with a smart save from Tom Pett, responding sharply to a quick free kick as he sprung off his line and blocked the shot.

Rovers managed to weather the storm though, with the hosts managing few further efforts.

And on 37-minutes, they struck gold thanks to an enormous cock up in the Stevenage defence.

Green lofted a hopeful ball forward from deep in midfield and both Chris Day in goal and Dembele left it for each other.

That allowed Jennison Myrie-Williams the chance to nip in and steal possession before quite literally walking it into the net to level things up.

That gave Tranmere an almighty lift and they dominated until half-time.

Max Power and Kayode Odejayi both had shots blocked whilst Green swung in a series of threatening corners.

And with the clock running down, the pressure finally paid off.

Stevenage only half cleared a corner to Power, who lofted a cross towards the penalty spot.

Standing there was Odejayi, and the striker jumped highest to nod back across goal and in at the far post.

That gave Tranmere the advantage going into the break, and after the restart they looked comfortable in defending their lead.

Green was pulling the strings in midfield but he was pivotal in defence too, making some crucial tackles and interceptions.

However, with little over twenty minutes to go, Graham Westley made a double substitution that reinvigorated his side.

Charlie Lee was one of the arrivals, and he flashed one shot just past the post from 20-yards before seeing a fierce drive saved by Brezovan.

In between, the ‘keeper had to make another solid block as he dived low to his right to palm an effort from Pett round the post.

Stevenage were now seriously knocking on the door, and Brezovan was called upon again when he had to save on his line from Bruno Andrade’s header.

And after all the pressure, Rovers were finally made to pay on 77 minutes when the equaliser came.

This time, the visitors did not properly deal with a corner and after the ball had bobbled around the box.

It fell to Lee near the penalty spot and with Brezovan wrong footed, he had a gaping hole to guide the ball into.

Micky Adams tried to change things round. Iain Hume came on for the tiring Myrie-Williams and he added some composure to the Rovers side when they could easily have sunk after conceding.

Indeed, of all the chances that came in the remaining ten minutes it was the visitors who had the best.

They counter-attacked quickly after play had broken down at the other end, with Lee Molyneux, who had replaced Taylor, carrying the ball forward.

Once in the Stevenage half, the winger poking a pass forwards to Green, but the midfielder could only slide a shot just wide of the post when through one-on-one.

That meant things ended all square and Tranmere will have to wait until the end of the season to see if this is a point gained, or two dropped.

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