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Season Review: April

Our 2016/17 review ends with a successful April

19 May 2017

Shrewsbury’s poor form in March continued into April as poor refereeing decisions once again cost Town, this time against Bristol Rovers. Ryan Yates was the recipient as he was shown two yellow cards before half-time, both of which appeared harsh on second viewing. Town had performed well up to that point, but Billy Bodin would score twice in the second half, including a controversial penalty.

Things went from bad to worse three days later when Millwall made it back to back home defeats for Paul Hurst’s side. Millwall, who would later reach the play-off final, scored goals either side of half-time to give the visitors the win. Shaun Whalley scored a late equaliser, but there was no time to get back into the game.

Four defeats on the spin meant that Town were in desperate need of a victory to give themselves a good chance of staying in the division and they duly delivered at home to Rochdale. Stefan Payne scored the only goal of the game early on as Town put in a dogged performance against a highly thought of Dale side.

Town followed that up with a 1-1 draw at home to Walsall on Good Friday. Town probably weren’t at their best for much of the game and went a goal down in the first half, but Stefan Payne was on hand again to rescue what eventually proved to be an all-important point.

Another important point followed on Easter Monday as Abu Ogogo made a surprise return to the starting-11. Ogogo had been out of the side for just over two months, but returned ahead of schedule and his presence appeared to make the difference as Town once again came from behind to rescue a point, with Mat Sadler scoring Town’s goal.

With two-games to play Town still needed at least one good result to help them towards safety and they delivered with a brilliant 1-0 win over Southend United in the penultimate game of the season. Southend needed to win in order to get into the play-offs, but Town performed magnificently and Junior Brown’s diving header was enough to give Town all-three points and ensure they stayed in League One for another season.

Only an unprecedented turnaround in results would see Town relegated on the final day as Port Vale looked to overcome a 10 goal deficit. There were a few worries as Town quickly went 2-0 down away at Oxford, but it was always unlikely and Town managed to steady the ship, eventually finishing 18th in League One on 51 points.

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