‘He is proving hard to stop’ - What Bristol Rovers can expect from Jevani Brown and Exeter City

Matt Taylor’s Grecians are the best performing side out of the four sides promoted from League Two last season
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Bristol Rovers make the trip down South this afternoon as they take on familiar foe Exeter City in their latest League One match.

The Gas, winless in eight matches, are looking for a win from somewhere and despite their bad run of form, will look at it as one of their more winnable games given the two were in the same division last season.

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Exeter have started brightest out of themselves, Rovers, Forest Green and Port Vale with two out of the four promoted teams currently occupying two of the relegation spots.

It’s still the early stage of the season with just under a quarter of the campaign gone, but teams are starting to forge an identity, so has much changed in Devon?

Daniel Clark, the Exeter City correspondent for DevonLive, gives his asessment of the season so far and how this afternoon’s match may play out.

What are Exeter’s strengths and weaknesses heading into this match?

The obvious weakness is squad depth. Last week we had 18 players available – with the bench inlcuding three 17-year-old, a 19-year-old, and the goalkeeping coach. Could be weaker this weekend, as two of the 17-year-olds have gone out on loan, and doesn’t expect to have any players back fit. But the strengths are that the attacking unit is clicking, and in Jevani Brown, Sam Nombe and Jay Stansfield, have three very good players all in form, and when they are at their best, can cover for the fact there’s a few slight weaknesses and players out of position at the moment due to the injury crisis.

Is there any team news going into the match? Last week saw several players miss out... So how do you expect them to line up?

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We aren’t expecting anyone to be back and fit again in time for this weekend, so suspect it will be pretty much the same side that played last week in the 4-0 win at Forest Green Rovers, almost by default really. And given who we have available, probably is the best side to pick.

Rovers are struggling in League One at the minute, is it fair to say Exeter have managed to adapt to life at a higher level so far? What have you made of the League One challenge?

It’s been a really weird start to League One for Exeter as it doesn’t really feel like League One yet. We’ve barely played any of the sides in the top half at this stage and none of the big boys or the clubs that think they shouldn’t be in the league. We’ve only played Cambridge, Shrewsbury and Lincoln of teams in the top half, so it is kind of hard to judge just how strong City are having yet to face most of the really top sides. But they are picking up points regularly and given themselves a chance and a bit of a cushion when we do start to face them, and if everyone stays fit, can match them

What player from Exeter do you think is going to cause Rovers the most problems?

Jevani Brown is probably the answer. The Jamaican is having a brilliant start to the season being top of the League One goals and assists chart, and has a great relationship with Sam Nombe as well, which really helps. With the pace City have upfront and wide, and the time he manages to find on the ball, he can pick out passes and run games, and is proving hard to stop.

And finally, what is your prediction?

Given the last two games have seen City 4-0 and then 5-0 up at half-time against Rovers, we’d love to keep that going and go in 6-0 up! But more likely, probably a 2-0 win for Exeter.

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