Morecambe 1-5 Doncaster Rovers
THE Shrimps suffered a second successive home defeat as they went down 5-1 to an impressive Doncaster Rovers.
The Shrimps got off to a terrible start as Doncaster took the lead after just three minutes from a corner.
James Coppinger took the set-piece, Middleton flicked the ball on from a central position and Andy Butler was there to stab the ball home.
Andy Williams went close to a second when he broke through with eight minutes on the clock, but his shot went just wide of the far post.
The Shrimps were 2-0 down after 17 minutes. Middleton broke down the right and his excellent pull back bypassed the home keeper Barry Roche, Ryan Edwards blocked a shot but could only then divert the ball into the path of John Marquis was left with a simple tap-in
Marquis could have got on the scoresheet again when he met a Coppinger cross a the far post after 25 minutes, but his flicked effort was just wide.
After a shocking start the Shrimps came to life for the final 15 minutes of the half. Kevin Ellison was the first to threaten when he cut inside from the left hand side and drilled in a low shot that was blocked by a Doncaster defender for a corner.
The Shrimps were then rewarded for their efforts with a superb goal on 44 minutes. Alex Kenyon played the ball in to Cole Stockton and the on loan Tranmere man produced a superb turn and volley to beat the Doncaster keeper low to his left.
The goal should have given the Shrimps a lift but it was Doncaster who started the second half the better with Coppinger, playing his 500th league game, firing a shot just wide of the far post.
Butler also went close after 53 minutes after a smart period of play from Rovers. He was again in the middle as the ball was played in, with a smart goalline clearance from Ellison denying him as he was about to
wheel away and celebrate his second of the game. When the ball was played back in, Rowe's header went just over.
It was 3-1 on 66 minutes when Jordan Houghton played Coppinger in down the right. He cut inside before letting fly with a shot that was saved by Roche only for Marquis to follow up the rebound and score his second of the afternoon.
Matty Blair made it 4-1 with a stunning individual goal on 75 minutes. He got away down the right and cut inside to leave two Morecambe defenders before slotting the ball home into the far corner.
Coppinger then capped a memorable day when he scored a stunning goal 10 minutes from time with a shot from distance that flew into the bottom right hand corner.
A poor Morecambe day still had time to get worse however when Alex Whitmore was shown a straight red card for a late tackle on Marquis.
MORECAMBE: Roche, Wakefield (Jennings), Edwards, Whitmore, Conlan (Molyneux), Kenyon, Barkhuizen, Rose, Dunn (Massanka), Ellison, Stockton.
Subs not used: Nizic, McGowan, Mullin, Fleming.
Booked: Kenyon, Rose, Stockton
DONCASTER: Marosi, Blair, Evina, Butler, Wright, Middleton (Calder), Houghton, Rowe, Coppinger (Beestin), Marquis, Williams (Mandeville).
Subs not used: Etheridge, Garratt, Fielding, Longbottom.
Ref: O Yates.