DONCASTER Rovers and Oldham Athletic will meet for the second time in four days in today’s FA Cup second round tie at Boundary Park.
Rovers go into the game buoyed by a 1-0 League One win over the Latics at the Keepmoat Stadium but midfielder David Syers that will count for nothing and he is expecting another tough battle.
“It was tight in the first half,” said the former Bradford City man. “They had obviously looked at a few of our DVDs. When we tried to play out from deep they definitely had a game-plan and they pushed up and tried to catch us out. But as soon as we broke their first line you could see them dropping back into a decent shape.
“They certainly tried to push on at times as opposed to sitting back and soaking up the pressure.
“We didn’t play particularly well in the first half and we turned around 0-0 at the break but that wasn’t a problem because we always back ourselves in that situation. We feel that we will always be the stronger side in the second half because of our fitness levels and that’s been the case more often than not.
“Cotts (David Cotterill) scored just after half-time and we had another two or three good chances later in the half - their keeper made a great save from my header after I had come off the bench.
“They made us work hard for an hour or so and it could have been a different game if they had scored first. The first goal is always key in tight games like Tuesday because it changes the dynamics.
“We’ve kept a number of clean sheets and opposing teams know that if they concede a goal against us it is a massively uphill task for them to get back into the game. The strength of our defence gives us the confidence to go looking for a second goal.
“As I say, they gave us a hard game on Tuesday but I’m sure that they would have been happy to go away with a draw on the night. It will be different today because they are at home and will see the game as their best chance of getting through to third round.
“It is going to be interesting to see how they change their style of play at home as opposed to playing away and playing in the FA Cup and not the league.”
Oldham covered the pitch with plastic sheeting as a precaution against overnight frost.