Writer: Saddler 13
Date:Thursday May 24 2007
Sat, May 26
Bristol Rovers and Shrewsbury face each other in what is to be surely a fantastic showdown between two good teams, in what is the first League Two Play-Off Final at the New Wembley.
Pirates boss has gone on record as saying that their football can be devastating at times and he also said that his side have ticked two boxes out of the three, and now they need to tick the third box.
Shrews manager Gary Peters had praised his sides determination and character after their fantastic 2-1 result at MK Dons in the semi-final. He said that they will have every chance on Saturday when they step out at the new Wembley stadium.
Rovers have been allocated an extra 5,000 tickets, which are on sale from 9am tomorrow, which means that their team could be backed by up to 40,000 spectators this Saturday. On the playing side of things, expect the Pirates to come strong with a fully fit squad. Rovers will wear their famous quaters for the match.
He may have only scored 9 goals in all competitions this season, but the Rovers number 9 has quality and potential to strike damage on an opposition when partnered up front with Richard Walker. Expect a livly afternoon from this man.
The biggest news of the week in the build-up is that the Shrews will not be playing David Edwards, after he rejected the offer of a new contract. Peters has said that he only wants players who want to play for the club in the future at Wembley on Saturday. Expect a 25,000 strong Shrews following, which will also back a fully fit squad.
The former Preston player has been in fine form for the Shrews and is known as a striker, but has played his best games as a defender this season. He is tall and strong in the air, which has meant some man of the match performances from the youngster. He will be the key to a Shrews victory on Saturday, as he looks to stop Lambert and Walker.
Both sides have met three times this season, twice in the league and once in the Johnston's Paint Trophy. Rovers have the advantage on head-2-head, having won twice and drawn once, which makes them undefeated against the Shrews this season.
I predict a close match, even closer than Wednesday's Champions League final. There will be key matchups, with Langmead vs Lambert being the key. Could go to penalties, with the Shrews winning.
Date:Thursday May 24 2007
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