With my first outing of the year also being at the "home" of a Coventry based team last week, I was wondering if the Sky Blues could be as dominant as Alvis were last week in their local cup rout over Wolves Uni at Green Lane. One thing was for certain and that was that this would be either a really good time to play the Gas, or a really bad time- and when you consider that this was my eighth time watching Bristol Rovers without seeing them win in 90 minutes, the signs were all there to suggest that there was only one way for this game to end. Alas, despite watching them draw away at Macc Town, Port Vale and Barnet, as well as suffering defeats to Millwall, Notts County and Wolves, I can at least say that I've seen them win a game on penalties as they just about edged past Grimsby at Wembley in what was undoubtedly the biggest game I've seen the Pirates play. Regarding Cov City, it would be my first time ever watching them.
|... and Coventry City!|
So with my poor record well documented, I turned my attentions to the game and although Rovers came into this one in atrocious form they would still fancy themselves after hosting an entertaining 2-2 in the original tie just ten days prior to this replay. On paper, it was two sides from the same league, both in the top half of the table and both with their own troubles off the field- however, bearing in mind that Rovers hadn't picked up a win in seven games in all competitions, I made my usual pre-match prediction and went for a 2-0 Cov win. An additional bit of spice to this fixture came from the fact that whoever won would play Birmingham City at home in the fourth round- a strange but interesting prospect for the tenants renting St Andrew's from the team they could be facing.
|For reference, Blues fans, this is what the view from your away end is like|
|The turnstile was alright, I suppose|
|Still, when times are hard, there's always a half-time pie to cry into|
|The magic of the cup... or not|