Doncaster Rovers 1 Cardiff City 3: Late double from Koumas leaves O’Driscoll puzzled over latest loss

DONCASTER Rovers manager Sean O’Driscoll was left stunned after two late goals left his side with nothing after comfortably holding their own against promotion-chasing Cardiff.

A late brace from Cardiff substitute Jason Koumas left manager Dave Jones delighted as they saw off Doncaster 3-1 to keep up hopes of clinching an automatic promotion spot.

Jones’s men looked like they were heading for a draw after James Coppinger cancelled out Chris Burke’s opener for the visitors.

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But he threw on Koumas in the 87th minute and saw the midfielder snatch a stoppage-time double to take home three points and leave City a point behind second spot.

But while Jones returned to South Wales delighted, O’Driscoll could not hide his disappointment at the loss, saying: “That’s three games in a row where we have played well and got nothing to show for it.

“Obviously it’s disappointing and frustrating but we have to lift ourselves now for Preston at home on Tuesday night. It felt a bit surreal at the end of the game because with five minutes left I thought we might go on and win.

“There was a period midway through the second half where I thought they were out on their feet but then when we walk off at the finish we are 3-1 down.

“I thought our gameplan worked and if you look at the stats we were probably the dominant team. But they are a talented side and you have to give them credit at the end of the day.”

Defeat for Doncaster leaves them seven points and two places away from the relegation zone.

Burke’s early goal looked to have put the Welsh club on course for a comfortable afternoon.

But the home side rallied to snatch an equaliser through Coppinger, who combined with James Hayter to plunder a smart finish past Tom Heaton.

As Doncaster pushed for a winner, however, they were left shaking their heads in disbelief as substitute Koumas fired home a superb free-kick from distance, before adding an even later third following a well-worked move with Craig Bellamy.

A delighted Jones said: “I felt we were in control of the game at 1-0 but we just switched off for a spell and allowed them to get a bit of momentum. We had to step it up after they equalised and I felt we came away with a deserved victory in the end.”

Doncaster Rovers: Gary Woods, Dumbuya, Martis, Friend, Mills (Kilgallon 21), Coppinger, Gillett (Wilson 83), Stock, Oster (Euell 71), Moussa, Hayter. Unused substitutes: Sullivan, Thomas, Mason, Shiels.

Cardiff City: Heaton, McNaughton, Keinan, Samuel (Naylor 84), Quinn, Burke (Koumas 87), Olofinjana, McPhail, Whittingham, Bellamy, Bothroyd. Unused substitutes: Brown, Blake, Gyepes, Matthews, Rae.

Referee: S Hooper (Wiltshire).

Rovers man-of-the-match: James Coppinger.