Doncaster Rovers: Don’t stop believing!

Liam Mandeville finds the net against Forest. Photo: Andrew Roe
Liam Mandeville finds the net against Forest. Photo: Andrew Roe
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Don’t stop believing.

That is the message from Darren Ferguson to his players after they started the new season with defeats to Accrington Stanley and Nottingham Forest.

Lapses in concentration cost Rovers dearly in a 3-2 defeat at Stanley on Saturday.

Ferguson was pleased with his side’s better discipline and shape on Tuesday night despite exiting the EFL Cup at the hands of Forest.

Both games saw Rovers lose to stoppage time goals.

But Ferguson could see an improvement against the Championship outfit - and hopes to see a continuation of those encouraging signs when they host Crawley Town this weekend.

“Two games in and we’ve had two defeats, which is not great,” said Ferguson.

“But I know I’ve got a good bunch of committed lads who want to learn.

“We’ve got a good balance of youth and experience. We’ve got some really good young players at this club but they can also cope at the moment, and that’s the important bit.

“We have to take the stuff we did well on Tuesday night into Saturday’s game and get the three points there.

“You’d like to think we’ll get more controlled possession on Saturday.

“We’ve got to keep on improving as a team,” he added.

“We’ve got some good players and we’ve just got to keep believing in what we’re doing.”

Rovers also welcome Cambridge United to the Keepmoat Stadium on Tuesday night.

And Ferguson has re-iterated another key message to his men - ‘be brave on the ball’.

“I’m not daft and I’m not deaf,” said Ferguson.

“I can here the sense of frustration sometimes from the fans when we get possession back and go backwards.

“Sometimes that’s a good ball, but a lot of the time you should play forward.

“It’s just about them having that confidence to do what we’re asking them to do.

“I was pleased with second half against Forest, I thought we showed a lot more bravery on the ball.

“I would prefer someone to take a risk in the right area of the pitch rather than someone playing a safe ball all the time.”