BRISTOL Rovers endured another terrible away day, losing 4-0 to Hartlepool.
John Ward made a number of changes for the trip up to the North East, but his tinkering was rewarded with Rovers’ biggest loss of the season.
The Gas got off to the worst possible start when Marlon Harewood got his head on a corner in the first minute.
Second best all over the pitch, Rovers went two down to a fantastic strike from Pools midfielder Bradley Walker shortly after the quarter hour mark.
The game was over as a contest on 56 minutes when Simon Walton scored the home side’s third goal from the spot after McChrystal had fouled Harewood in the penalty area.
The goal stemmed from some poor play by O’Toole, who had casually squandered possession, not for the first time in the game.
Rovers seemed bereft of ideas until Ward introduced the hard-working Chris Beardsley, who at least took the game to Colin Cooper’s men.
Beardsley forced the Pools keeper into a good save and followed that up by rattling the crossbar minutes later. That was as good as it got for the Gas.
Hartlepool wrapped up the rout in the 89th minute when their substitute scored after a shot rebounded off of Mildenhall’s post.
The result leaves us just four points above the drop zone and again looking nervously over our shoulders. The team need to rediscover their form against Southend on Friday at the Mem – lose this one and we could be just a single point from the relegation places.
For me, it’s clear that whichever league we find ourselves in for the 2014-15 season, John Ward should not be manager of the football club. John is an honourable, decent man and steadied the ship when we needed him to, but I just don’t believe that he is the man to get Rovers up the divisions.
We have some exciting young players such as Lockyer and Clarke who have both signed extensions to their contracts this week. It’s time we had an exciting manager.
Do you think John Ward is the man to take Bristol Rovers forward? Have your say below.