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Copps Post Newport

20 September 2016

James Coppinger insisted the focus should be on his hard-working team-mates rather than himself, after another day of celebration at the Keepmoat Stadium.

The midfielder, who became the first player to make 500 senior appearances for the club in last week's win at Morecambe, was the subject of more attention in the 2-0 win over Newport County AFC.

As well as presentations before the match, when he became the first inductee into the Rovers Hall of Fame, the Black Bank marked the 26th-minute with a confetti display as the supporters paid tribute.

More importantly, he opened the scoring with a sublime free-kick which set Rovers on the way to another vital victory.

Coppinger said: "I appreciate everything the club has done for me over the past week. The fans as well, I do really appreciate it and last week couldn't have gone any better for me.

"But for me it is about the team. Last week at Morecambe was perfect for me, with the result and getting Player of the Month. I've had time to reflect on it and to become the first person to play 500 times for Doncaster Rovers is massive for me.

"But I am so focused on playing for seasons to come that I cannot reflect on it too much, I don't want to lose any of that desire to keep going. I didn't want anything to do with me overshadow what we needed, because we've been on a great run and it's not all about me - but thankfully I got the goal and we got the win we needed.

"It is great to get that adulation, but the team have been so good. If it wasn't for me then it would have been a different celebration at Morecambe if we got beat

"I'm glad everyone had a great day, but now we forget about it and concentrate on the important games coming up.

"I got the free-kick and straight away I fancied it, and was delighted to see it go in. The keeper was at the side so I went as if to go over the wall and went to the side he was at."

Saturday's win moved Rovers up to second in the Sky Bet League Two table, and Coppinger reckons there.

He added: "It starts with what we do off the pitch, and we have to produce every Saturday.

"We're not getting carried away and want to maintain the standards that were set at Morecambe because of how well we were in front of goal and in defence.

"You always look at what people do off the pitch and in training, how they want to improve. People are so hungry to get back into League One and hungry to do well for Doncaster Rovers. Everybody is working in the same goal and pulling in the same direction.

"You have to have that in any successful team - we won 2-0 here and there is a little disappointment that the performance wasn't quite there and we didn't finish more chances.

"People will analyse that and not just be happy we won, we want to get better - it's a great sign."

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