Cureton strikes again in City victory
Jamie Cureton`s fifteenth goal of the season helped Exeter City to a 1-0 victory away at Rochdale
Latching on to Richard Logan`s flick, Cureton finished coolly for what proved to be the winning goal.
Despite last Tuesday`s impressive win over Bournemouth Paul Tisdale still made a change to his starting XI, David Noble replacing Richard Duffy to strengthen the midfield.
City began assertively and carved out the first chance of the game. Liam Sercombe collected Cureton`s pass and he showed neat touches to cut inside his man but his left foot finish lacked conviction as the keeper saved what should have been the opening goal.
David Noble is yet to score for the Grecians but he nearly broke his duck early on, his dipping volley just cleared the cross bar as City`s dominated the opening exchanges.
Rochdale had chance too in an open first-half. A low save from Ben Hamer looked set to be tapped in on the rebound but Scott Golbourne`s last ditch tackle kept the score line goalless.
Following a spell of Dale pressure City took the lead with a simple goal. Logan flicked on Hamer`s deep goal kick, his touch cleared the centre half and bounced invitingly for Cureton to race onto a lift over the advancing keeper for the opening goal.
Ryan Harley had City`s best chance of a much more subdued second-half, but the keeper was equal to his audacious attempted lob from inside the penalty area.
Rochdale pushed for an equaliser but Gary Jones` long range effort that Hamer comfortably held was as close as they came. Despite a flurry of late corners to defend City were good value for away win number ten in all competitions this season.
The victory puts City within touching distance of guaranteeing League One football next season.
Tisdale must take huge pleasure from back to back clean sheets, City`s defence has had its moments this season but now seem to be getting it right at last.
For the first time in over a month City have no Tuesday night game, giving them a week to prepare for Saturday`s west country derby at home to Yeovil.
City: Hamer, Tully, Taylor, Archibald-Henville, Golbourne, Dunne, Noble (Duffy), Sercombe, Harley, Logan (O'Flynn), Cureton