Shrewsbury Town 1 - 2 Plymouth Argyle | League One | 10/02/2018


Pre-match
Shrewsbury came into the game on the back of two impressive away victories against Portsmouth and Bristol Rovers, but Plymouth were also on a good run losing just once in twelve games.


With Dean Henderson missing from the team through suspension, MacGillivray continued to deputise in a familiar looking team selection. Nathan Thomas made his home debut starting on the right wing.

Plymouth's team contained Anthony Sarcevic, would had played for Shrewsbury two seasons ago before being allowed to leave part way through his contract. Also in the Plymouth squad was ex-fan favourite at Town, Lionel Ainsworth who had a place on the substitutes bench.

Teams
Shrewsbury: 
MacGillivrayBolton, Nsiala, Sadler, Lowe; Godfrey (Payne 68); Thomas, Ogogo, Nolan, Rodman (Whalley 67); C Morris (John-Lewis 68)
Subs: Beckles, Whalley, John-Lewis, B Morris, Eisa, Rowley, Payne

Plymouth Argyle: Matthews, Threlkeld, Vyner, Bradley, Sawyer, Sarcevic, Fox (Songo'o 69), Ness, Lameiras (Ainsworth 77), Taylor, Carey
Sub: Songo'o, Ainsworth, Church, Makasi, Grant, Taylor-Sinclair, Letheren

First Half
Shrewsbury took the lead after 6 minutes through Carlton Morris. Jon Nolan burst through the centre circle before playing the ball to Alex Rodman, who in turn slipped in Max Lowe on the left hand side of the penalty area. His first time cross got deflected into the path of Morris, who turned the ball home from about 4 yards.

This goal spurred Plymouth into life, a central free-kick was struck just wide of Craig MacGillivray's post, before the first contentious decision by the referee. Ex-Shrewsbury man Anthony Sarcevic got played into the box and appeared to tumble over the ball, however the referee saw a foul and awarded Plymouth a penalty. MacGillivray guessed which way the Plymouth man would put the ball correctly and saved the shot.

A few minutes later, a long ball by the Plymouth goalkeeper was flicked on and next thing you see is a Plymouth player running clear of the defence to slip the ball under MacGillivray to make it 1-1.

Second Half
Plymouth had grown into the game and were starting to dominate the match.  They took the lead but
 this wasn't without controversy. Plymouth took a quick corner, but the ball went straight out for what looked like a Shrewsbury throw in, but the referee told them to retake the corner, suggesting the ball was moving when taken. It should have been a thrown in to Shrewsbury, but instead Plymouth were able to swing in a corner which was flicked on at the near post before being bundled over the line at the near post.

Nathan Thomas almost restored parity from the kick off, with Rodman crossing from the left and Thomas meeting it with his head, but the Plymouth goalkeeper was equal to it before saving the rebound too.

Shrewsbury continued to look for an equaliser, but shots from Ogogo and Payne lacked conviction and the goalkeeper saved both comfortably.

Final Thoughts
Plymouth deserved their win, after conceding the early goal, they dominated the game, Shrewsbury struggled to get out of their own half and even a triple substitution and a change in formation didn't really affect how the game played out.

If I were bitter man, I'd say that the referee and his assistants had conspired to let Plymouth win, but in truth Plymouth out Shrewsbury'ed Shrewsbury and deserved their win. They looked to be a very physical side and won most 50:50 balls, their striker won most balls in the air which allowed them to build their attacks much further up the pitch than Shrewsbury and they pressed high up the pitch, not giving Shrewsbury players time on the ball.

Man of the Match - Carlton Morris
It was a game were there were few bright moments, but Morris was in the right place at the right time for his goal and looked to be full of running as per usual before making way as part of the triple substitution.

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