Oxford United v Tranmere Rovers : Match report

Micky Mellon’s side travelled to the Kassam Stadium of Oxford United in the hope of gaining their first three points ‘on the road’ this season. 

Tranmere fielded two changes from their previous fixture, a 2-2 ‘bounce-back’ draw against visitors Gillingham. Woods replaced Ray as Sid Nelson returned to his natural position of centre back and Hepburn-Murphy replaced Morris as Micky Mellon looked to field three ‘out and out’ strikers. 

Similar to the previous fixture, Tranmere started with an attacking threat. Perkins with a blocked shot from 6 yards out after a perfectly timed cross by loanee Hepburn-Murphy. Paul Mullin also had an attempt from the edge of the box but goalkeeper Eastwood kept the ball from the back of the net. 

Oxford Uniteds first chance of the game came midway through the first half when Tranmere conceded their first penalty of the game. Henry slotting past Davies to give the hosts a relatively early lead.

More misfortune for the Rovers was faced on the stroke of the 40th minute as Woods picked up an injury which forced the substitution to bring Borthwick-Jackson into play. 

At the beginning of the second half, Tranmere appeared to have kept their urge to attack. Ridehalgh’s free kick finding Jennings’ head which failed to hit the target. Loanee and substitute Borthwick-Jackson had a further attempt on goal from 25 yards but could only find the car park. That’s a fine!

On the stroke of the 60th minute, Micky Mellon made his second sub of the game. Kieron Morris replacing Stefan Payne. 

Ten minutes later, Davies collected the ball from the back of the net again as the Oxford United faithful were reassured of their first goal of the season. Brannagans shot from 10 yards out deflecting its way into the net.

Micky Mellon made his final substitution of the game as David Perkins was replaced by Ollie Banks. 

The game seemed to be ‘fizzling out’ before the referee pointed to the penalty spot in favour of the hosts, again. Henry got his second goal of the game as he slotted the ball in the opposite direction of Davies.

The final whistle came when the result was 3-0 in favour of the hosts in a fixture that Tranmere Twitter described as a ‘game to forget’. Thus, the 639 Tranmere faithful made another long journey to Prenton Park with a heavy heart.

During the post match interviews Tranmere manager stated that his side still needed to ‘learn and develop’ as they still ‘couldn’t reach the tempo required to achieve any proud result’. 

Tranmere are back in action on Tuesday 17th September against Peterborough United under the lights of Prenton Park.

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