FOREST GREEN 0
PLYMOUTH ARGYLE 1
CELEBRITY catwalk model Daisy Lowe strutted her stuff at the New Lawn, but it was Plymouth Argyle who caught the eye as Forest Green fell to only their second home defeat of the season, falling off the top of their League Two perch.
Filming a TV show on Rovers’ status as the greenest football club on the planet, Lowe watched on as Plymouth’s Antoni Sarcevic struck a sumptuous first-half strike to knock the stuffing out of Rovers
Earlier, it was nip and tuck in the opening exchanges, but it was Rovers who should have laid the first glove on the game – Joe Wollacott’s punch released Aaron Collins on the counter and with Jack Aitchison in support, Collins chose to go his own way to allow Scott Wootton to block.
It was end-to-end – Plymouth’s Joel Grant failing to get enough purchase on a teasing Byron Moore cross after Sarcevic conjured the opportunity.
Rovers boast a miserly defence, conceding just 10 in 16 games, but they were breached on 24 minutes.
And it was Sarcevic who opened Rovers up. The Plymouth playmaker punished some sleepy defending from a short corner to slalom across the box and arrow a deflected strike beyond the flailing Wollacott.
Rovers looked for parity and almost found it deep into first-half stoppage-time. The scrambling Alex Palmer got a finger on an arrowed Joseph Mills cross which dropped over the bar. Mills pulled up after whipping the ball in and was replaced at the break by Nathan McGinley. Joe Riley replaced Callum McFadzean at the break but he was replaced on 69 minutes after picking up a knock.
Rovers were pegging the Pilgrims back, but in a rare attacking foray – Neil Canavan was a whisker from nodding in a Sarcevic corner.
Plymouth remained resolute after the break as Rovers knocked on the door. Carl Winchester found the head of Matty Stevens, but Aitchison watched his fizzer fly over.
Cooper sent on Matt Mills as a striker in the dying embers of the game in hope of salvaging a point.
Six minutes of added time saw Plymouth hold on with Rovers going close through Ebou Adams and Liam Shephard.
And Cooper was incandescent when Matt Mills had strong claims for a penalty waived away as he appeared to be pushed in a goalmouth scramble.
FOREST GREEN: Wollacott, Bernard (M Mills 85), Rawson, Kitching, J Mills (McGinley 45), Adams, Winchester, Shepard, Aitchison, Collins, Stevens
Bookings: Bernard 45
Subs not used: Thomas, Godwin-Malife, Morton, Dawson, Taylor
PLYMOUTH ARGYLE: Palmer, Sawyer, Wootton, Canavan, Sarcevic, Edwards, Mayor, Grant (Taylor 84), Moore, McFadzean (Riley 45, Riley 69), Grant
Bookings: Moore 30, Edwards 82, Palmer 93
Sub not used:Cooper, Randell, Rudden
Referee: Sam Purkiss
Star Man: Ebou Adams
Away fans: 1,224
Next up: Forest Green travel to Leyton Orient on Saturday, November 23