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Blackburn Rovers 2009

Only two days after the Blackburn Rovers first team had secured Premier League safety, by beating Portsmouth two nil, twenty five Rovers fans turned up at Ewood Park hoping to emulate their heroes in the 2009 Football Aid charity match. With club legends and members of the 1994-1995 Premiership winning team, Mark Atkins and Kevin Gallacher, in attendance the atmosphere was one of excitement.

Monday 11th May 2009
Blackburn Rovers Home vs Blackburn Rovers Away
K.O: 7.00pm
Legends: Mark Atkins and Kevin Gallacher
Match Officials: Stuart Delmonte, Rob Zemmel, Ronnie Quinn and Stephen Welch

The match itself began at a fast pace with both sides eager to get an early goal and establish their authority on proceedings. It took only five minutes for the first real chance to be created; a cross in from the right by the home team was headed against his own post by none other than Kevin Gallacher, thankfully for him the ball bouncing back off the post and being cleared to safety.

The opening goal arrived in the 7th minute and it was the home team that got the early advantage in rather fortuitous fashion; away keeper Fiachra Lynch skewing a clearance from a back pass to Micheal Roche just outside the area and his first time shot over the keeper finding the back of the net (1-0). That lead was doubled ten minutes; the ball was crossed in from the left wing and headed clear by the away defence, the clearance being controlled by Mark Atkins on his chest just inside the box then hit right footed into the bottom left corner (2-0).

In the 20th minute the away team were awarded a free kick in a central position around 30 yards from goal, Kevin Gallacher hitting a fierce right foot effort that was pushed round the post for a corner by home keeper, Jonathon Barton. Moments later the away team fell further behind after some sloppy defending resulted in home captain, Glen Mullan, stealing possession and running into the box before slotting past the keeper into the bottom left of goal (3-0).

Not to be upstaged by his opposing legend it was Kevin Gallacher that grabbed his side a lifeline in the 29th minute. The away team were given a free kick just inside the opponents half, the ball was tapped to Gallacher who ran towards goal before unleashing a dipping right foot shot into the top right corner of the net giving the keeper no chance (3-1).

Just when it looked as though the away side were mounting a fight back the home team re-establshed their three goal advantage; a great ball found Dean Thorpe wide right of midfield, he outpaced his marker and delivered an inch perfect cross towards the back post that found Oliver Clark, his first time left foot shot going in at the near post (4-1). The last chance of the half was created out of nothing, the impressive Michael Roche cracking a left foot shot from fully 30 yards off the crossbar!

Half Time: Blackburn Rovers Home 4 - 1 Blackburn Rovers Away

With both sides having received some words of wisdom from the playing legends, or in the away teams case a good kick up the backside from Kevin Gallacher, the players emerged from the dressing rooms ready for the second half. The half was only 6 minutes old when the home team got themselves another goal; breaking in numbers the home side had a 4-on-2 advantage, the ball was crossed in from the right and just as a shot was about to be hit a great tackle came in from the defender. Unfortunately for the away team the ball fell to Michael Roche who hit a brilliant right foot shot into the top right corner (5-1).

In the 61st minute Michael Roche deservedly got his hat-trick; the ball was crossed in from the left and headed clear by the away defence falling for a home player who laid it off for Roche to smash a right foot shot from outside the box into the far left corner of the net - a truly great strike (6-1). Ten minutes later and the poor away players were staring down the barrel of a heavy defeat - Roche this time turning provider, playing in Glen Mullan who ran clear of the defence, rounded the keeper and slotted into the empty net for his second of the match (7-1).

Far from looking dispirited the away team were showing great desire to get themselves back into the match and in the 75th minute they got just reward for their efforts - Ray Tammam was tripped just inside the area and won a penalty, a chance which he duly converted by hitting his shot hard to the keepers right (7-2). Seconds later they almost grabbed another goal back; substitute Simon Mickle chasing down a back pass and blocking the keepers attempted kick, goalkeeper Jonathon Barton redeeming himself by saving the resultant shot.

With only five minutes remaining in the match the away team got themselves another goal direct from a free kick. A foul on the edge of the area providing Andrew Thornhill the opportunity to showcase his talents - his perfect, left foot shot curling up and over the wall and into the top right corner (7-3). As the game entered injury time the away team fittingly scored the final goal of a fantastic contest; Mark Hitchen being played through on goal by team mate, Simon Mickle, he ran at goal from the right hand side and shot back across the keeper into the far left corner of the net (7-4).

Full Time: Blackburn Rovers Home 7 - 4 Blackburn Rovers Away

Man of the Match (Home): Michael Roche
Man of the Match (Away): Michael Waldie
Moment of the Match: Chris Kay  

Home Team: Jonathan Barton, Chris Kay, Gavin Stowell, Robert Thorpe, Martin McMullan, Dean Thorpe, Oliver Clark, Glen Mullan, Michael Roche, Rune Thomsen, Nicolaj Wiinberg, David Cross, Paul Cross. Mascot:  Georgia Mullan

Away Team: Fiachra Lynch, Bradly Maton, Andrew Thornhill, Mark Duckworth, David Traynor, Terry Hardwick, Mark Hitchen, Ray Tammam, Michael Waldie, Nick Cohen, Neil Duckworth, Simon Mickle. Mascot: Thomas Duckworth