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Preparation is key for Ferguson

9 March 2018

Darren Ferguson is confident his side are prepared for the long journey south to face Southend United on Saturday.

The weekend’s game with the Shrimpers is Rovers’ first in two weeks, and Ferguson says this point of the season is the most crucial in his side’s Sky Bet League One campaign.

“We’re at a crucial stage of the season now, we have eight weeks of the season left and we have to keep the players as fresh as possible, having the break we’ve had can’t have been a bad thing,” Ferguson said.

“In football it’s funny how things change so quickly, if you get the right results then in three games time you could be looking at a good end to the season, so you can’t look too far ahead and just focus on what’s in front of you.

“You never know what other teams are going to do, at this stage of the season you have teams fighting for everything up and down the division, we just have to take care of ourselves and take each game as it comes.”

Rovers run out 4-1 winners at the Keepmoat Stadium the last time the two sides met, however Ferguson believes this weekend’s opposition could provide a sterner test under manager Chris Powell.

“Southend are in great form at the moment, they’re a much-improved side, Chris Powell has gone in and they are very organised, it’s been a fantastic start for them under him,” he said.

“It’ll be a tough one, they’ve got a lot of Premier League experience in that side and they know how to play in terms of their shape, the pitch isn’t great and that could be a factor in the game.

“We’ve done well against Southend recently, and we did a lot of good things against them in the reverse fixture, what with Ben Whiteman’s hat trick and we hope for a repeat performance on Saturday.”

Tickets for the game against Bradford City on Monday March 19 at the Keepmoat Stadium are available from

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