Stevenage earned their first win of the season with a late but great 1-0 win at Notts County this afternoon.
Boro had the best chances of the game with Robin Shroot and Darius Charles going the closest, but neither goalkeeper was beaten for the majority of this hard fought game at Meadow Lane. However with the game in injury time, Dunne fired home after good work by Shroot to take all three points back to Hertfordshire.
Team news saw Graham Westley hand David Gray and Roarie Deacon their first starts of the season - both at full back - in place of Oumare Tounkara and Dani Lopez who both dropped to the bench with Darius Charles moving up top. Luke Jones was also amongst the subs after recent injury.
Boro enjoyed the best of the early possession in the opening few minutes but it was the hosts who had the first half chance. After Chris Day was adjudged to have handled centimetres outside his box, the resulting free-kick saw head tennis in the box before a low shot was easily gathered by Boro’s keeper.
A period of sustained pressure from the hosts saw them win a number of corners but the visiting defence stood firm and Day’s goal remained untroubled with Yoann Arquin culpable of missing two half chances.
After soaking up pressure from the hosts, Boro pushed forward as the half progressed and created a number of opportunities of their own, including the best chance of the first half.
Firstly Robin Shroot twisted and turned his defender but could only fire straight at Bialkowski, whilst minutes later he fed Darius Charles on the left hand side on the box – his right footed-curling effort was turned behind by the County ‘keeper at full stretch.
The final few minutes of the first half saw half chances for both teams. For the Magpies, Callum McGregor advanced through the middle and fired wildly over when he had options either side of him. Whilst at the other end a good passage of play by Deacon, Shroot and Doughty saw the on-loan midfielder set up Shroot for a 25-yard effort which curled just over as the two teams went in goalless.
Stevenage were by far the better team in the second half and created two great chances early on, both of which fell to Robin Shroot. Firstly he played a good one-two with Doughty before seeing a curling effort fly just wide before then being sent through again by a Charles flick, only for a County defender to somehow get back and deflect the ball behind.
Both teams pushed forward in search of a goal but a combination of good defending and poor final decisions lead to a number of neat moves breaking down.
The game looked to be heading for a draw until Dunne’s late intervention. Shroot advanced down the left channel and cut inside, playing the ball across goal for the midfielder to fire home into the back of the net to deservedly secure all three points for Boro.
Notts County: Bialkowski, Dumbuya, Liddle, Smith, Tempest, McGregor, Labadie, Fotheringham, Bell (Nangle 87), Arquin, Coombes (Balmy 72)
Subs not used: Spiess, Waite, Campbell-Ryce, Thompson, Boucaud
Boro: Day: Gray, Ashton, Hartley, Deacon, Smith (Heslop 53), Dunne, Doughty (Tansey 90), Freeman (Tounkara 72), Shroot, Charles
Subs not used: Arnold, Jones, Burrow, Tansey, Lopez
Attendance: 3,925 (175 away)