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THANKS TO FANS

9 September 2012

Manager praises fans for their support yesterday


Manager Mark McGhee last night paid tribute to the club's supporters for the part they played in helping his side earn a point from a 2-2 draw against Aldershot Town.

"I would like to thank them for staying with throughout the game. They really stayed with us right to the end and if they hadn't got behind us I don't think we would have come back to get a point.

"It was really important to us all, and took the pressure off us, and was very much appreciated by players and staff alike."

Rovers had to wait until the 89th minute to draw level, after applying sustained pressure on the Aldershot goal.

"In the end we gained a point from the game and, with the way things are for us at the moment, I think every point we take is one gained regardless of where we are or who we are playing against.

"We have to accept that we still have to prove ourselves, because we aren't a team who can say we should be beating everyone we play; we have to go out and earn that right."

The manager endured a frustrating time on the sidelines as he watched his charges do everything but score after the Shots had taken the lead.

"It was frustrating before the equaliser came along and, for a manager, that's the worst possible thing to happen. It ages you, stresses you, and you suffer all the emotions that you don't want and it becomes very difficult to watch.

 "In the early part of the game I felt that we were really comfortable and moved the ball around fairly well. We almost got in a few times before we scored, and when we got the first goal I thought we would go on from that."

He was disappointed, though, with both Aldershot goals. The first came following what appeared to be a foul on Jim Paterson. No free kick was given and the visitors scored immediately afterwards from a long ball into the box. The second goal came after a poor defensive header.

"The equaliser was disappointing, because I thought there was a clear foul on Jim Paterson. However when the diagonal ball was hit into our box we were out of shape and they shouldn't have scored off that ball.

"The second goal was also a disappointment and we need to be better defensively, there's no doubt about it. However I do think we have the personnel to enable us to be better, so we just have to go out on the training ground and work hard to eradicate the mistakes we are making, whether they be
individual errors or the shape of the team."

On the plus side, Rovers scored their first home goals of the season.

"That was important because we have proved to ourselves that we can get goals at home."

Both David Clarkson and Fabian Broghammer scored their first goals in a Rovers shirt.

"I think you saw a statement from David Clarkson today and I thought he was excellent for us. It wasn't just his goal, which was terrific, but he showed by his reaction that he's here and he's a Bristol Rovers player and is enjoying it.

"Fabian Broghammer is quick and he can get into areas like he did today, but he's been a little bit 'ropey' in the sense of his inconsistency and his discipline within the game, so I don't think he's ready to start for us yet. It's important that when we do put any substitutes on that they make a contribution, and I think the three who went on today did that.

"It's important for me to be able to look at the bench and see that I have players who can go on and change the game or can do something different."

Cian Bolger was stretchered off towards the end of the game, but the manager hopes to have him available for next Saturday's trip to Gillingham.

"We feared that he had suffered a serious knee injury but the doctor assured us that everything is stable and should settle down, and I don't think we should worry that it's anything serious."

The manager opted to play with three strikers yesterday, and the unfortunate player to miss out because of that was defender Michael Smith, who went on as a substitute and showed a superb attitude.

"Michael was in the team at the beginning of the season because of his attitude, and the fact that he was excellent in pre season and worked so hard to get his place. Today we felt we needed more goals in the team so it was a choice between him and Eliot Richards, who can score goals, so we squeezed another striker in the team."

The full interview with Mark is now on Gas Player, as is a post match interview with Fabian Broghammer


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