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21 November 2016

Manager Darren Ferguson on winning three points at the death against Hartlepool.

Darren Ferguson was delighted with the performance of his team which kept the pressure on the division’s pacesetters.

Ferguson’s side left it late against Hartlepool United and he said anything other than the three points would have been a “travesty.”

“It would have been a travesty if we hadn’t won,” he said. 

“For me we totally dominated the game; I thought we were really good. 

“What we wanted to do we did really well, we got control of the game and need to cut out the decision making in terms of the lapses of concentration that let them back in to it because it gives teams something to hang on to.

“If we hadn’t have won it then I wouldn’t have been disappointed with the performance, I thought we stuck to what we wanted to do and that’s a real key factor for me.

“I said that to the players at half time, what we want to do is keep believing in what we’re doing and I thought some of our football was very good and we were very dominant and it was a good goal that won us the game.”

The win over United extended Rovers’ unbeaten home run to eleven games but didn’t come without incident as goalkeeper Marko Marosi was substituted with suspected concussion and his replacement Ross Etheridge – who was beaten by a first half penalty – also broke a finger.

“He’s broke his finger,” Ferguson confirmed. 

“We couldn’t take him off, he had to get on with it and he went and saw the doctor, they’ll both be fine. He’ll have to get on with it; it’s only a broken finger!

“We can only concentrate on ourselves. If we can keep the consistency – we’re still unbeaten at home which is really important because we’ve got all the big ones to come here. 

“If we win next week then we’re 36 points from 18 games and we’d be delighted with that, absolutely delighted.”

Ferguson reserved special praise – some of it backhanded – for some of his younger charges in Liam Mandeville and Jordan Houghton whom he can build a team around.

He said: “I thought he (Mandeville) was very good. I said before the game that there was nothing better than getting your teammates out of trouble as a young lad. He was a handful, scored the goal – both the strikers did – and I’m really pleased.

“He needs to get over all the “I’m tired” nonsense, he’s 21, he’s in the team and he needs to stay in the team and make sure Willo (Andy Williams) doesn’t get back in the team and if he scores goals then he’ll be fine, it doesn’t make any difference to me who’s playing. He’s now at a level where he needs to be consistent. Physically he seemed okay to me.

“I thought he was very good, and we are looking to extend it (Houghton’s loan deal). We will be having discussions next week with Chelsea and will get an answer next week as to whether we can do that or not but certainly I’d look to extend it no question.”

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