Doncaster Rovers: Dickov hails defence after clean sheet at Nottingham Forest

Rovers' Paul Keegan beats the keeper but his header skims the post
Rovers' Paul Keegan beats the keeper but his header skims the post
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Paul Dickov lavished praise on his makeshift backline after Doncaster earned a deserved point at Nottingham Forest.

Rovers had the chances to claim all three points at the City Ground but, mindful of the five his side shipped at Bournemouth a fortnight ago, the goalless draw proved almost as satisfying to Dickov as last week’s wins over Huddersfield and Watford.

And the Scot was keen to extend his particular thanks to his back four and goalkeeper for the determination and discipline they showed to shut out Forest.

“Paul Quinn was outstanding - as was the whole back five as a unit,” Dickov told The Star.

“Sam [Johnstone] made a brilliant save in the first half and although he’s not had that many saves to make afterwards, his calmness and assuredness in coming and taking crosses really took the pressure off us.

“James Coppinger - an attacking midfielder playing right back - again played well. And we had Quinny in there, a right back playing centre half.

“Throughout the team the work rate and desire was there,” he added. “The determination to keep a clean sheet - particularly from the back five - was top class.

“It’s nice for them to get some plaudits. It’s usually the strikers who get the headlines. They deserve a lot of credit.”

Saturday’s stalemate, combined with results elsewhere, saw Doncaster move eight points clear of the drop zone - but Dickov is only too aware how quickly things can change.

“We’ve got ten tough games left,” he said.

“If you go back to the end January and beginning of February, we’d pulled six or seven points clear but we got dragged back into it very quickly and found ourselves back in the bottom three.

“We just have to sustain the performances.

“It’s been a big week for us. I’m delighted with the players. This time a fortnight ago we’d been hammered at Bournemouth.

“I was looking for a big reaction from them and I’ve had that.”