Chris Wilder's notes for the Bristol Rovers programme
After two frustrating results it is good to be back at home. We have had two games that we have dominated against teams in and around us but as we have seen, it’s important that we are clinical. I wasn’t too disappointed with either performance on the whole but games get decided in and around the penalty area and for two games against sides in the top six we have given them very few chances.
You have to play to the conditions but we will have to find a way to overcome what we saw against Burton. I can be a little bit forgiving towards some of the forward players because we may have to change the way we go about stuff when it’s difficult for attacking players to show what they have got. To only pick one point up in the last two games is a bit harsh. There were plenty of good things but people only remember the results. We have to pick up better results
It won’t be easy against Bristol Rovers today. I think it shows the toughness of the league when a team that at the start of the season would have been looking for a top seven place with the players they have got and the resources that they have invested has struggled to make its mark. There are some big clubs in this division and I am sure that John will do a great job at Rovers, backed by a fantastic following. I saw them on Tuesday night against Cheltenham and they are a good side who I have no doubt will pull away from any danger.
On Saturday we dominated once again but we have to get into our game what Southend had. I have seen Southend be second best against Chesterfield and then us in successive games yet they have come away from those matches with six points.
We have had two goalkeepers in two games and both have come up to me afterwards and told me how great the fans were with them. I thought the support at Southend was first class and well done to the people behind ‘Ultimate Away Support’ day. You got behind Luke on his debut, just as you did with Max in the game before and that is precisely the encouragement and backing that drives a team on.
Since my last notes we have brought Luke and Justin Richards in, with Ty Marsh going out on loan to Staines. Tyrone’s time will come but in Luke and Justin we have experienced players who have that bit of know-how that we will need over the next few weeks. Peter Leven’s absence is a blow but Andy Whing came through a game in midweek and is getting closer to a return, as is Michael Duberry.
Turning away from first team matters, congratulations to Richard Blackmore and his Oxford United Ladies team on their FA Cup success. Beating Charlton and facing Newcastle in the next round is a great achievement and the result of a lot of hard work from all concerned.
And finally on behalf of all of the management team and the squad, we offer our sincerest condolences to Andrea and Laura following the sad death of Andrea's husband Brian this week. Our thoughts are with you and your family.