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McSheffrey urges players to deliver in Gillingham clash

11 March 2022

Gary McSheffrey has laid down the gauntlet to his players to deliver performances in Saturday’s Sky Bet League One clash with Gillingham.

Rovers are seeking a positive response following last weekend’s defeat at Cheltenham Town which brought to an end a positive run of form.

Having seen results go their way last Saturday and in midweek, Rovers have an opportunity to make that count against the Gills and the manager says the onus is on his squad following another week of good preparations.

On bouncing back from defeat last weekend:

“We were poor, we switched off at key moments that we had worked on during the week.

“The players need to take accountability and deliver a real response on Saturday.

“We need to find a level of consistency in the remaining games to give ourselves a chance and we’ve got another opportunity to do that on Saturday.

“The players go out on the pitch and do their jobs. It’s always about the players on a matchday and them wanting to turn up, be brave and be match winners.

“We can shape them up and prep them. People might think we have put out a great team or that we should have made personnel changes but ultimately you put out a team you feel can deal with that game and win that game.

“We’ll do that on Saturday and it will be down to the players to deliver the points.”

On facing Gillingham:

“They’ve got some threats. They’ve got a very good target man and we’re going to have to deal with him.

“They’ve got good energy and a good workrate around the team in their midfield areas.

“Barring their result last week, they’ve put a good run together and got some good points on the table over the last month.

“It’s going to be a difficult one but it’s two teams that are down there that are going to want to go for the three points.

“We respect what they’re good at but we feel our strengths can make the difference on the day.

“The lads have got to turn up, be ready for it, win their battles individually and collectively.

“If they look in the mirror after the game and they’ve ticked all those boxes and left it all out there, I’d like to think that should be enough.”

On Rovers’ current position in League One:

“We may be a game shorter but ultimately we know what games we have coming up, what games we need to win and no one is pulling away.

“We’re in the exact same position we were in last week, even after a midweek round where we didn’t play.

“The maths of it don’t lie.

“We won one, we drew one and then we got a performance at Cheltenham that wasn’t up to standard. We need to be better than that this weekend.”

On Reo Griffiths:

“Reo is carrying an Achilles tendon problem. He came in, played so well and made such a positive impact on the team that you couldn’t not play him.

“He’s gone from probably not playing enough game time in France with the Covid shutdown of games, to playing a lot of games in the first month here so he’s just feeling sore in his tendon.

‘He wants to play and feels he can manage it but we probably want to give him a weekend off it to shut it down for five or six days and completely rest it.”

On injured players:

“John Bostock has trained but he is still going to need match minutes.

“We’ve got an in-house game pencilled in for next week for John to get some minutes. He’ll be in and around it but he won’t be ready to be on the pitch this weekend.

“Tom Anderson has felt something in his foot again. He’s got a protective boot on and he’ll be going for a scan.

“Jordy Hiwula is looking sharp in training and refreshed. He was having a bit of a hard time before his injury but his head is in the right place, he looks sharp and he could be in contention.

“Cameron John is coming on leaps and bounds every day.”

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