Copps keeps calm over drop fears

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DONCASTER Rovers may be lurching ever closer to the Championship relegation zone, but James Coppinger, for one, is not unduly worried.

“We’ve been in this position before, in our first season at this level, and we are aware of what needs to be done,” said the midfield star.

“Obviously we are not happy with our recent results but I don’t think too many teams would have done much better given the number of injuries we’ve had.”

Coppinger, who pulled out of Saturday’s game at Swansea after suffering a thigh injury in the warm-up, was one of 14 players unavailable to Rovers’ boss Sean O’Driscoll in the game against the fifth-placed Welsh club at the Liberty Stadium.

Rovers missed the attacking edge that Coppinger often provides and drew another blank when going down 3-0 against the Swans.

Missing the game was the second major disappointment suffered by Coppinger in the space of five days.

He had been a member of the patched-up Rovers side which had crashed to a club-record 6-0 home league defeat against Ipswich.

“It wasn’t a 6-0 game, but that’s the score which will go into the record books,” said Coppinger.

“I think that they had something like nine shots at goal and scored with six of them, which is a very impassive ratio. It just shows that when you are struggling, as we obviously are at the moment, that nothing goes for you.

“That was shown at the end when Paul Keegan had two good shots well saved by their keeper.”

Despite the scoreline, Coppinger felt that Rovers played some good stuff on the night.

“I thought that at times we played better than we had done in recent games and that everyone tried their best,” he said.

“I think that the fans could see that we were trying and they were brilliant - even though we lost 6-0. Hopefully we can reward them with a better result when we entertain Watford on Saturday. Before then, of course, we’ve got another tough task at Norwich tonight.

“A lot has happened to them since we last played them at Carrow Road two seasons ago.

“They’ve been relegated to League One and come straight back up as champions and are now in the top six of the Championship.

“We beat them 3-1 at the Keepmoat Stadium earlier in the season and they’ll be looking to avenge that defeat. They will have seen that we are on a poor run at the moment and they’ll be looking to take advantage of that and push on in their bid to win back-to-back promotions.”