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by The Rovers Review

Rovers’ latest League One test is their final away game of the season at Oldham Athletic.

Gavin Strachan is aware that Oldham will be throwing everything at Rovers this Saturday to help their bid for survival,

“[Changes] wouldn’t really be performance related, we don’t feel anyone has let us down in terms of that. If there was to change it would be on merit or to have a look at certain things.

“Oldham will be very motivated. We need to be more ruthlessness if you look at the Oxford game that would be the key thing.

“The type of the team they are [suggests they’ll come at you]. They’ve got lots of attackers, lots of wingers, lots of creative players and they like to play out quickly from the back and with that they’ve got to play for, they will come at us, but you’ve got to impose yourself on the opposition.”

The assistant manager confirmed there are no new injury concerns but there is a bit of “wear and tear” from a few individuals after playing a high volume of games.

Former Rovers midfielder Richie Wellens will be the man in the opposite dug-out as he aims to keep Oldham in League One after taking charge in September 2017.

Tics striker Eoin Doyle is the fifth-top goal scorer in League One after netting 15 goals for Wellens’ side. The 30-year-old striker is on loan from Championship club Preston.

Should Oldham draw or beat Rovers then that will send MK Dons down and help the Tics’ bid for survival, however a win for Rovers would keep Oldham right into the relegation mix.
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by The Rovers Review

Doncaster Rovers want to halt Blackburn's promotion party tonight as Tony Mowbray's side visit the Keepmoat for Rovers' latest test.

Rovers manager Darren Ferguson is in awe of the Blackburn side Mowbray has assembled, but he still keeps his confidence that his squad can still get a result,

"I think they've set the standards and set consistency very well and that's the key,  consistency to results and they've managed to do that and they deserve to be where they are in the league.

"It's a game I'm really looking forward to and I've said to the players they should do as well. I think they'll bring good support, they're bringing a good team and a very good manager with them.

"It's a very good game for us too: a good atmosphere and two good footballing teams but it will be a difficult game we know but it's a winnable game."

Ferguson has also said he no qualms about "freshening it up" again ahead of a tough clash against Blackburn Rovers.

Midfielder Tommy Rowe has been officially ruled out for four months after undergoing an operation on a recurring tendon injury, meaning he'll miss the remainder of the season for Rovers. Previously, Rowe had only missed one league game for Rovers since signing permanently almost two years ago.

Rovers' defense will have to deal with League One's third top goalscorer on Tuesday as Bradley Dack could be playing, who has managed to net 18 goals so far this term.

In the reverse fixture Donny came out 3-1 victors on the second day of the season as goals from John Marquis, James Coppinger and Alfie May helped the South Yorkshire side run riot.

The last time Blackburn came to Doncaster was when both teams were in the Championship during the 2013/14 season and Rovers won 2-0 with goals coming from Theo Robinson and James Husband on either side of the half.  Blackburn haven't won in Doncaster in over 60 years - a 5-1 win in Division 2 in 1958.
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by The Rovers Review

Doncaster Rovers take on Karl Robinson’s struggling Oxford United at the Keepmoat this Saturday.

Rovers’ assistant manager Gavin Strachan is looking forward to the occasion with the team hitting a good run of form with them only losing 6 out of 31 games,

“Oxford is a team that are full of energy, and they have two very strong strikers, if he chooses to use them, and they have good experience and strength at the back.

“We are in a really good spell of form at this moment in time and my message to the players would be just to embrace the challenges that we have coming up, because everyone has something to play for.

“Whether it is for a place in the team now and next season, new contracts for next season, young players trying to get their foot in the door, we do give opportunities to people and they have to take them when they come.”

Most of the players seem to have come through the Bury test okay with them having the entire of Thursday off to recover and spend time with their families.

Rovers are joint top of the form table with Blackburn Rovers after collecting eleven points from five games. Oxford is 18th, picking up a dismal four points from five games.

The last time these two sides met was back in December last year, when Oxford edged out a 1-0 win. However the last time they visited Doncaster, Rovers won 2-0 back in 2003 at Belle Vue, with goals from Paul Green and Tim Ryan.
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by The Rovers Review

Doncaster Rovers look to keep their top-10 finish bid alive as they host already-relegated Bury this Tuesday evening.

Darren Ferguson says his side are far from safety but insists he and the squad are looking up, rather than down,

"We're not over the line yet, we can still get in trouble but obviously we're looking up the way rather than below us and tomorrow nights motivation for us is huge because there's a possibility we can go in the top 10.

"You look at the recruitment they made in the summer - big names coming into the football club - ambitious. I always thought it would go one or two ways: they'd either have a really good season or it might got a bit belly-up.

"They could do anything tomorrow, I have no idea what they're going to do in terms of personnel but it's never nice to see a club relegated but it might be a dangerous game for us because the fear factors to them now and that can come into."

Joe Wright will be unavailable for Rovers this Tuesday evening after "rolling his ankle" in the win over MK Dons at the weekend. Andy Butler will come straight into contention to step into the void position to resurrect the partnership with Mathieu Baudry.

Meanwhile, Alex Kiwomya will be treated carefully as Ferguson highlighted this is the first time the forward could be involved in two games over four days since his recovery from injury.

Bury have lost their last seven consecutive games which eventually led to their relegation to League Two.

Contributing to this poor season for the Shakers is the fact that on the road this term they've only picked up 0.4 points-per-game - leaving them with the worst away form in the league. In addition to their poor results, they haven't scored a lot either with them netting only 15 goals on the road, conceding 35 along the way.

It looks even more unlikely that Lowe's team should score at the weekend with Rovers boasting the fourth best defensive record in the league, conceding only 46 goals in 40 games. Only Blackburn, Shrewsbury and Wigan have conceded less and Rovers have games in hand over all three!

In the reverse fixture Rovers ground out a 1-0 win, before Lee Clark got sacked, after a goal from Ben Whiteman. The last time Bury visited the Keepmoat was in August 2015 where the game controversially ended 1-1 after two 90-minute goals from Harry Forrester and Leon Clark.
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by The Rovers Review

Doncaster Rovers return to action after an extended break to face a Gillingham side who have lost their last three games.

Darren Ferguson is feeling confident ahead of the trip to the Gills, but thinks Rovers need to be wary of a reaction from the opposition,

“Well when the manager Steve went in they went on a hell of a run and did fantastically well, they were probably looking at the play-offs themselves at one point. But then they’ve slipped away a little but, they’ve lost their last three games and a heavy defeat to Southend will have hurt them because they took a lot of fans there.

“What we’ve managed to do is we’ve not suffered too many back-to-back defeats which is important, we’re now on the back-to-back wins after Bradford and Blackpool and we’re going into a game on Saturday that’s winnable but again it’s going to be tough because you would imagine that given what happened to Gillingham last time at Southend, they’ll be a reaction there.

“They’re a good team and they’ve got real threats and real obvious ones that we’ve gone through today on the training ground – it’s a tough place to go and one thing we’ve got at the moment is that we seem to be playing quite well and looking fairly solid and the players are playing with confidence.”

Rovers will be boosted by the return of Andy Butler and Andy Boyle to the side after their recoveries from injury. Tom Anderson will narrowly miss out on the game as he’s scheduled to be fit for action for the MK Dons game next week.

Alex Kiwomya will also be available after his battle with a short illness which meant he missed the victory at Blackpool.

Gillingham’s home form isn’t too strong as they’ve collected 4 wins from 18 home games, while Rovers have only 5 of their 20 away games so far this season. The Gills’ home form is consequently the worst in League One with them picking up 21 points from a possible 54.

Although they have the worst home record it will still be a test for Rovers who haven’t won at MEMs Priestfield stadium since January 2007.

Both sides do boast quite a good defensive record in the league with Rovers fourth best, conceding just 45 goals in 38 games – only Wigan (25), Shrewsbury (33) and Blackburn (36) have shipped less goals. Gillingham have the 7th best defensive record conceding 47 goals in 39 games.

The last time both sides faced each other was on the opening day of the season where it ended goalless. Ady Pennock was in charge for that game but was later sacked and replaced by current manager Steve Lovell.
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