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by Rich Colby

An admiral defeat in the League Cup during the week won't have done Rovers confidence any harm as they travel to the Midlands to face Walsall.

Paul Dickov's men played with much freedom in the second half, and many say if Theo Robinson had managed to tuck away a late penalty they would have gone on to win the game.  Rovers will be hoping for a similar play style but different result from their game at the Banks's Stadium this weekend.

Minds will be firmly focussed on Rovers league position of 15th, just 3 points outside the drop zone, but on the plus side they are also just 3 points off the play-off places with a game in hand.  Victory against Dean Smiths side should help put more optimism on the season so far as Rovers will look to break into the top half.

The Sadlers haven't had a great start to the season either picking up just 8 points from their 9 games so far and winning only once.  Dean Smith has gone out of his way to tighten up their leaky defence by re-signing former captain and Doncaster born Andy Butler.  Hes the man to watch this weekend.  Excellent in the oppositions half from a set peace and strong in defence.

Rovers will be without striker Nathan Tyson who suffered a concussion in the week at Fulham.  Curtis Main is also close to full fitness but probably needs another week so could well miss out.  Rob Jones could feature.

Rovers won 3-0 on their last trip to the Banks's Stadium back in August 2013, heres hoping for more of the same tomorrow.

Come on you reds!

Overall record Vs Walsall:   P 56/W 21/D 9/L 26
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by Rich Colby

Rovers will be looking to follow up their first home victory since March with a League Cup tie under the lights at Craven Cottage. The games are coming thick and fast for Paul Dickov’s men, and they’ll want that to continue against the team who they haven’t faced for 17 years.

The Cottagers treacherous start to the season cost manager Felix Magath his job last week; they’ll have Kit Symons in caretaker charge for this one.  They mustn't be underestimated though. They are still a league above Rovers and will be favorites to win the tie with the riches they still have in store following relegation from the Premier League. Former England international Scott Parker will pull the strings in midfield, and he's my man to watch for them.

Rovers enjoyed a bit of a goal party at the weekend against Chesterfield, and I’d expect the side to remain the same baring one or two minor changes.  Harry Forrester is available again following his two game ban. He will probably start from the bench. Curtis Main and Rob Jones remain Rovers only injury doubts.

Paul Dickov will be content to be the underdog in this fixture.  Although there is likely to be a different feeling in the air following Felix Magath's departure from Fulham, they may still take some time to find their confidence.  Rovers will be desperate to find victory at the Cottage not only to boost the bank balance a little, but also with the chance of a bumper tie in Round 4.

Come on you reds!

Overall record Vs Fulham:  P37 / W10 / D10 / L 17
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by Rich Colby

Another Saturday in South Yorkshire sees Rovers face high flying Chesterfield at the Keepmoat Stadium.  The hosts form has been patchy at best so far this season, but Rovers went a little way into stopping the rot with a draw against Crawley on Tuesday evening.

Rovers have no new fresh injury concerns.  Harry Forrester will serve the second of his two match ban.  The midfield master was sent off for the second time this season last Saturday against Bristol City.  Curtis main remains sidelined, as does club captain Rob Jones.

Chesterfield seem to have had a season exactly the opposite to Rovers so far.  Confidence is flowing through the side, and there is extra incentive for striker Eoin Doyle to well at the Keepmoat Stadium.  The Spireites hit man aims to score his third hat-trick in successive matches, a feat only seven other men have ever produced in the football league.  Obviously, he will be the man to watch for the opposition.

Rovers are badly in need of a boost to kick start their season again.  And what better way than to defeat some local rivals on a Saturday afternoon?

Come on you reds!

Overall record Vs Chesterfield P 90/W 26/D 29/L 35
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Download, print and hand out the poster for the Chesterfield game now!
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Download, print and hand out the poster for the Crawley Town game now!
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