Report: Doncaster Rovers 1 Bury 1

Andy Williams battles for possession.
Andy Williams battles for possession.

Doncaster Rovers and Bury shared the spoils on the opening day of the season amid controversial scenes at the Keepmoat Stadium.

Harry Forrester inadvertently swept Rovers ahead in stoppage time with a long range volley - the only problem was that he was meant to be returning the ball to Bury who had kicked it out of play to allow treatment for a player.

After much lively discussion between both benches and teams, Rovers allowed Leon Clarke to walk it in from the kick-off and square up proceedings.

Bury had earlier enjoyed much the better of the chances but German goalkeeper Thorsten Stuckmann almost single-handedly kept the Shakers at bay with a string of saves.

Doncaster finished the game strongly before a crazy ending, reminiscent of Arsenal's FA Cup controversy with Sheffield United in 1999.

Paul Keegan was absent from the squad which meant Richard Chaplow started alongside Richie Wellens in midfield, with Curtis Main partnering Andy Williams in attack.

As expected Luke McCullough started at right back and was in the thick of the action early on as Bury left winger Danny Mayor imposed himself on the game, first drilling a cross straight at Thorsten Stuckmann before sending a teasing delivery just wide of the back post.

The visitors were quicker out of the blocks and indeed went on to enjoy the better of the first half, creating the clearer openings and restricting Rovers’ passing game.

Leon Clarke fizzed a shot just wide from distance before Stuckmann had to deny Tom Pope at the back post with a good reaction save.

Stuckmann then made an even better save low down to keep out Clarke, who missed the best chance of the half in the dying minutes when he was picked out by left back Chris Hussey but blazed over with the goal at his mercy.

Doncaster had only shown very brief glimpses and their best opening came from a quick counter attack but Curtis Main sent his shot wide.

Bury had Rovers on the back foot immediately after the restart and the hosts were again indebted to Stuckmann for keeping them on level terms, first denying Leon Clarke in a one-on-one and then sticking out a leg to deny Peter Clarke following a goalmouth scramble.

Leon Clarke then struck the angle of bar and post with a snapshot as Bury continued to look the most likely to break the deadlock, although Doncaster came close themselves when Williams almost connected with James Coppinger’s neat cross.

The Shakers continued to press and Hussey’s teasing left wing cross was headed wide by Leon Clarke, who with the game entering its final quarter wasted another gilt-edged chance after being put clear by Mayor. Moments later the striker teed up substitute Jacob Mellis but his effort was somehow deflected onto the post by Andy Butler with Stuckmann out of the equation.

Dickov introduced Nathan Tyson, Cedric Evina and Harry Middleton in the closing stages and the momentum of the game suddenly swung towards the hosts, who were denied two penalties in the space of two minutes. First Eddie Ilderton waved away Doncaster protests when Coppinger was tripped on the edge of the box and then denied what seemed a clear penalty after Tyson broke clear and went down under the challenge of Peter Clarke.

Shortly after Tyson had the ball in the net only for it to be ruled out for offside and there was still time for that man Stuckmann to make another save to keep out Leon Clarke - before Forrester sparked a bizarre ending with his unintentional goal.

Rovers: Stuckmann, McCullough, Butler, Jones, Taylor-Sinclair, Coppinger, Wellens, Chaplow (Middleton 82), Forrester , Main (Tyson 67), Williams (Evina 82). Subs not used: Marosi, MacKenzie, Whitehouse.

Bury: Walton, Riley, Hussey, Cameron, P Clarke, Etuhu, Mayor, Soares, Pugh (Tutte 56), Pope (Mellis 56), L Clarke. Subs not used: Hope, Sedgwick, Lainton, Rose, Brown.

Attendance: 6,429