Tranmere suffered FA Cup heartbreak on a frustrating Wednesday evening at Prenton Park, losing 5-0 to League One outfit Peterborough United.
Two first-half goals from Danny Lloyd put the Posh in control of the tie, and the Super Whites had to play for 65 minutes with ten-men after Jay Harris was given a straight red card. After such a heavy defeat, will any Tranmere players make our three star players list?
Peterborough’s no. 10 travelled back down south with the match ball having put in a performance of the highest quality. The 25-year old was lethal in front of goal, as he and his striking partner Jack Marriott caused the Rovers’ defence all sorts of problems.
Jay McEveley was replaced by Adam Buxton at half-time after having what can only be described as a shocking 45 minutes. McEveley struggled to cope with the electric pace of Lloyd, and he was at fault for the opening goal as his howler of a back pass lead to Lloyd rounding Scott Davies and slotting the ball home.
It wasn’t just his pace that impressed on the night, as his work-rate was impeccable too. He often appeared to be frustrated with himself after squandering a couple of half-chances, but the opportunities continued to pop up as he kept finding himself in the right place at the right time.
His clinical finishing in front of goal was the key to Tranmere’s downfall, and he will have been the center of attention on BT Sport last night, that’s for sure.
Despite conceding five goals on the night, the captain put in a very good performance. As he always is, he was very much a leader on the pitch and put every inch of his body on the line in defence.
When the game went into the latter stages, the game opened up more for both sides and the visitors often found themselves in on the break but McNulty was on hand to halt the attack on several occasions.
Even after the floodgates had opened, the veteran defender never stopped working for the team and was distinctively calm in the way he played the ball out from the back. The big man didn’t lose a single aerial duel on the night, which is hardly a surprise given his heading ability and overall stature.
The 5-0 scoreline did flatter Peterborough, and a lot of Rovers’ downfall came down to individual errors, and McNulty made none. It was a real captains contribution, and one that big Steve should be happy with despite the scoreline.
The 25-year old entered the fray after the first-half, replacing McEveley on the right of Tranmere’s back-three. He hasn’t featured for Rovers for a couple of games, with Mitch Duggan being the preferred choice prior to his recent injury.
Despite all of that, Buxton was arguably the best player on the pitch in the second-half. It really was a case of him coming on and making a point to Micky Mellon, and he certainly did that. The Super Whites played for a long period with ten men, but that didn’t stop the towering defender from bombing up and down the right flank.
With the ball at his feet, it always looked like he was going to make something happen. Whether that be a simple ball out from the back, or an overlapping run around Dylan Mottley-Henry, Buxton’s trickery and pace often asked questions of the Posh’s defence.
Given the injury problems that Tranmere have at the moment, it would be a big surprise if Buxton did not feature from the start in the league fixture against Gateshead this Saturday.