Cambridge United defeated by Bodin brace and Taylor goal

Billy Bodin’s first half brace and a goal from Matty Taylor completed a 3-0 score line at the Memorial Stadium as Cambridge United fall to a defeat at the hands of League Two promotion chasers Bristol Rovers.

The Gas prove to have too much for Shaun Derry’s side who now face a crucial match on bank holiday Monday against Oxford United at the Abbey Stadium if their play-off push is to continue.

Despite Harrison Dunk firing the first shot on target of the match, the hosts opened the scoring on ten minutes when Billy Bodin’s 25 yard right footed effort nestled into the bottom corner of the net.

The attacking midfielder was quick to score his and Rover’s second goal of the game, when the 24-year old got across his man at the near post to head the ball onto the underside of the cross bar and in, to give Shaun Derry’s side a mountain to climb.

However, the U’s were seeing plenty of the ball and on 26 minutes Zeli Ismail whipped a fierce cross into the Rover’s 18 yard box which ended with James Dunne lifting a shot over the bar.

Will Norris produced a fine save low down to his right with 11 minutes of the first half left to play, which kept United in the contest.

Jimmy Spencer twice had the opportunity to pull a goal back for the U’s before the break, but on both occasions was unable to find the target.

Shaun Derry replaced the former Notts County striker shortly after half time for Robbie Simpson, whilst Hull City loanee Max Clark also took to the field for his first Football League appearance in place of Luke Berry. The youngster was quick into action, laying off Darnell Furlong who struck wide from an awkward angle.

Will Norris continued to keep United within touching distance of their opponents when the shot stopper produced an outstanding save at his near post to deny Matty Taylor, who looked odds on to register Rover’s third goal of the match.

A fine delivery by Ismail gave an unmarked Simpson a glorious opportunity at the back post after the hour mark, but the striker’s header was miraculously saved by Mildenhall much to the frustration of the U’s.

However, it was to be the home side with the next foray of note as a long ball up field found Matty Taylor inside the United 18 yard box, where the striker cut inside the tracking U’s defence before slotting the ball past the onrushing Norris on 72 minutes.

Despite plenty of endeavour from the U;s in the closing stages, the goal had sealed the points for the hosts and eliminated any hope of a comeback in the game for United.

Bristol Rovers: Mildenhall, Leadbitter, Brown, McChrystal, O.Clarke (Lawrence, 71 mins), Taylor, Lines, J.Clarke, Montano (Parkes, 73 mins), Bodin, Gaffney (Easter, 78 mins)

Cambridge United: Norris, Furlong, Legge, Coulson, Haynes, Ismail (Roberts, 70 mins), Berry (Clark, 54 mins), Dunne, Dunk, Williamson, Spencer (Simpson, 54 mins)

Attendance: 10, 262 (443 away)