James calls for calm

Critical period: James Hayter says Rovers have nine cup finals remaining.                    Picture: dan westwell
Critical period: James Hayter says Rovers have nine cup finals remaining. Picture: dan westwell
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JAMES Hayter is pleading with Doncaster Rovers fans to get behind the team in their quest to beat the drop.

A minor section of the club’s supporters voiced their displeasure in midweek after watching Millwall condemn the Championship strugglers to a second consecutive home defeat.

But striker Hayter, recalled to the starting line-up versus the Lions due to Kyle Bennett’s absence through injury, is appealing to fans to stick by Dean Saunders side.

“We can understand their [the fans] frustration,” he said. “We feel the same as players. We all want to do well, win games and stay in this division.

“We have all got to try and stick together. I know it must be difficult for the fans after a performance like that against Millwall where we didn’t give them a lot to shout about but we need everyone to get behind us.

“We have to pick ourselves up, dust ourselves down, prepare ourselves right and get ready for nine massive finals.”

Two early goals from Andy Keogh and Harry Kane ‘knocked the stuffing’ out of Rovers, according to Hayter, who made his first start since the stalemate with Brighton and Hove Albion.

“We gave away two bad goals in the first 13 minutes which knocked the stuffing out of us,” he acknowledged. “We didn’t start too bad but then we conceded early on from a cross and Keogh had a free header.

“Millwall got their lead and sat back and just looked to break on us from there.

“They got the two goals which we gifted them and they were quite comfortable after that. They sat back and had two big centre-halves who cleared the ball and looked to break on us.

“We are disappointed with the goals we conceded against Derby and Millwall. We have gifted them goals.

“We have probably been better against the top teams who have come at us and we have counter attacked them. The last two teams have sat in and we have found it difficult to break them down.

“Millwall got men behind the ball because they could afford to because we were always chasing the game and we were well beaten in the end.”

Rovers face table-topping Southampton this weekend and Hayter feels they are capable of causing an upset.

“It is a difficult one at Southampton but the game takes care of itself,” he said. “It is a big game for us and we have to look to go there and get something. They are top of the league but we beat them at home so there is no reason why we can’t get something.”