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Dickov: We Will Fight For Our Lives

28 April 2014

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Paul Dickov reflects on his sides 3-1 defeat to Reading but insists the team will fight for their lives to get a result on Saturday.

“Today was disappointing. We got ourselves in such a good position in the first half, by playing well and by pressing high up the pitch. In the second half you have to give Reading some credit because they’ve done to us what we did to them in the first half, but the goals are poor. We’ve just looked at them again and I don’t think Sam (Johnstone) has had a save to make all game but we’ve lost the game 3-1. Again, the goals are down to individual errors.

“In the first half we really went for it. I don’t know if we were more up for it but we just didn’t let them play and we were on top. The penalty they scored has come from a goal kick which you have to deal with. That’s your bread and butter stuff. At 1-1 a point wouldn’t have been bad today. As much as we want to win every game we can, a point wouldn’t have been a bad point today against a very good side.

“Unfortunately we lost our shape, and the players needed to calm down a little bit and just be patient. But if you’re going to give the ball away like we did for the second goal you are going to get punished. And we have to give Reading credit because they have some top players who have played in the Premier League and they showed that today.

“We went in 1-0 up at half time and we'd played well, but you never feel comfortable and it’s important never to get complacent. We warned the players about this at half time but I really do think you have to give Reading credit for what they did because they came out in the second half and showed everyone what a good team they are and why they’re up there pushing for promotion.

Doncaster Rovers travel to Leicester for the final day of the season and Paul Dickov knows it won't be an easy task for his team, but insists that they have to have a good go at the champions to pick up a result.

“We have to go down there and have a good go at them. The one thing we do have to do is pick up some sort of result, and sometimes it can be better knowing that you really have to do that.

"We know it’s going to be tough. They are champions for a reason, but there’s always last day drama as people at this club know. So we go down there with the attitude that we can do that again.

“We have to focus on us. I’ve said all along; even when we pulled clear of the bottom three, that we have to concentrate on us. We can’t rely on other results, we’ve seen that. We have to start picking up points ourselves and we have one game left to do that.

"The one thing we will do is go down there, have a go and fight for our lives.

“The players are down after the result, but I know them and we’ll pick them back up and we will go again. Whatever happens, it won’t be through a sheer lack of hard work and a lack of unity through the team. As always we will deal with it on Monday and then draw a line under it and we’ll go again.

“I’ve always had the belief. People might call me naïve, but I still have that belief. I’m a positive guy by nature and we will drum that into the players. We have to go down to Leicester and give it absolutely everything we’ve got.

Rovers started Saturday's game without 3 of their first team players. Richie Wellens was on the bench whilst Lucas Neill and James Husband missed out completely due to injury.

“Richie came through okay. He was nowhere near ready enough to start the game because his muscles cramped up after the training he’s done this week but he’ll be fine for next week. Lucas (Neill) will have the all clear and Hubby is looking close as well.

Dickov was asked if he would use what happened at Brentford last season as inspiration going into the final match against Leicester City:

“I think you have to use that as inspiration. It just shows you that absolutely anything can happen in any given moment of the game, and we’ve seen that today.

"They’ve scored three goals and I think they were the only three shots on target. We have to be better defensively, and we have to be better going forward as well and if we do that it gives us a chance. All we’ve ever wanted is a chance to stay in this division and we still have that chance.

“Leicester will be desperate to win their last game at home and we will be desperate to get something out of it so we have to have a go. There’s nothing like taking it to the last minute again and we will fight for our lives on Saturday.” 

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