Match ends, Exeter City 1, Forest Green Rovers 2.
Forest Green ruined the party atmosphere at St James Park as they cruised to a comfortable win over third-placed Exeter.
The home side were celebrating the opening of their new Stagecoach Adam Stansfield Stand, but the atmosphere turned flat as a poor City side were easily beaten by Rovers.
Forest Green had the better of possession in a largely uninspiring first half, yet it was Exeter that came closest to scoring.
Pierce Sweeney's excellent pass was knocked down by Jayden Stockley and Nicky Law ran on to the ball, rounded goalkeeper Robert Sanchez but his shot clipped the inside of the near post and rolled across goal and away to safety.
The visitors went in front soon after half-time as Reece Brown picked the ball up on the corner of the penalty box and curled a delightful shot across goal and into the far top corner.
Rovers continued to play the better football and doubled their lead when Liam Shephard found himself in space on the edge of the penalty box and smashed a superb shot inside the far post.
Aaron Martin pulled a goal back in stoppage time in bizarre circumstances when his clearance from halfway went straight to Sanchez, but he inexplicably allowed the ball to go under his foot and into the net.
Report supplied by Press Association.
- 6TillsonBooked at 26minsSubstituted forJayat 54'minutes
- 8LawSubstituted forWoodmanat 80'minutes
- 14ForteSubstituted forAbrahamsat 65'minutes
- 4JamesBooked at 46mins
- 7WinchesterSubstituted forCollinsat 90+1'minutes
- 14CampbellBooked at 31mins
- 8GrubbSubstituted forArchibaldat 74'minutesBooked at 90mins
- Dean Whitestone
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Exeter City 1, Forest Green Rovers 2.
Goal! Exeter City 1, Forest Green Rovers 2. Aaron Martin (Exeter City) right footed shot from more than 40 yards on the right wing to the bottom right corner.
Attempt missed. Jayden Stockley (Exeter City) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high.
Theo Archibald (Forest Green Rovers) is shown the yellow card.
Substitution, Forest Green Rovers. Lee Collins replaces Carl Winchester.
Jake Taylor (Exeter City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Reece Brown (Forest Green Rovers).
Attempt missed. Tristan Abrahams (Exeter City) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left.
Substitution, Exeter City. Craig Woodman replaces Nicky Law.
Substitution, Forest Green Rovers. Theo Archibald replaces Dayle Grubb.
Goal! Exeter City 0, Forest Green Rovers 2. Liam Shephard (Forest Green Rovers) right footed shot from outside the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Reece Brown.
Corner, Exeter City. Conceded by Paul Digby.
Foul by Lee Martin (Exeter City).
Joseph Mills (Forest Green Rovers) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Substitution, Exeter City. Tristan Abrahams replaces Jonathan Forte.
Foul by Aaron Martin (Exeter City).
Dayle Grubb (Forest Green Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Jonathan Forte (Exeter City).
Gavin Gunning (Forest Green Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.