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WARD - WE HAVE TO BOUNCE BACK

21 February 2013

Manager on Saturday's game

John Ward will be looking for his side to bounce back this weekend following their 2-1 midweek defeat to high flying Rotherham.

Rovers have been on a good run in recent weeks, and the manager believes his side will be able to give Morecambe a tough test on Saturday.

John said: “Defeat happens, and you have to bounce back, this is not a unique situation.

“The last time we lost, against Gillingham, we bounced back very well, and we have to put that experience to good use again.

“We have handled ourselves well, despite the defeat on Tuesday we have looked back over the games we have played in recent weeks and we have handled ourselves well against teams that have been playing well.

“We are quite capable of going up there and handling ourselves well. With our performances I think we have gained a lot of respect from our opponents, which is what we have to continue to do.”

Although Rovers have put themselves in a much better position over the last few weeks, the manager knows his side have to be careful not to get sucked back in to the danger zone.

He said: “It is still a good situation, we are in a much better place than where we were three, four, five weeks ago. It is still not a clear situation, and we still have a lot of work to do to get out of it. 

“Football is full of strange situations, and we have a lot of work to do to make sure we don’t get pulled back into that bottom area, which is an area we don’t want to be in.

“There are never any foregone conclusions. We have to make sure we know how we have improved the situation and that we continue to do that.”

And the manager believes his side have earned themselves a lot of respect over the last few weeks.

He said: “The crowd recognised the efforts of the team and applauded them off, and that is a key thing.

“Your supporters know what they are talking about and what they want to see from the team representing them, and even in defeat they can say they saw the boys dig deep and have a good go on behalf of the club.

“We have earned respect off of our own supporters, the players have respect from me and they have respect off opponents, and we have to make sure that continues.” 

The manager could be forced to make a couple of changes for the game, with Ryan Brunt and Fabian Broghammer doubtful through injury.

John said: “Ryan Brunt is a bit sore, he has got a knee problem and we are not sure how it came about.

“He has bit of soreness and a bit of swelling this morning, so at the moment we have to say he is doubtful for the weekend.

“Fabian is sore with a tweaked hamstring, but again he is a doubt for the weekend, so we have a problem there. David Clarkson also has a sore ankle and we will be looking at him this morning.

“We don’t have a big squad to deal with it to excess, so we have to deal with these guys and look after.

“Jim Paterson is fit, but Adam Virgo has only trained for a few days and it is the first time I have seen him on the training ground since I have been here, so I do not think it would be right to consider him for this trip.”

However, the John believes he has quality on his bench that is ready to step up.

He said: “There is quality on the bench and we showed that the other night, as we had to make two changes because of injuries.

“There are guys there chomping at the bit waiting to go, and now it might just happen for them. It gives other people the chance to come on and play and stake a claim for themselves.

“The games are thick and fast, but we are hopefully these guys can get better quickly.

“I have a squad now that even with two or three omissions from Tuesday there is still enough experience and life to go and give Morecambe a tough afternoon.”

For the full interview visit Gas Player

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