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Almost to plan

Posted: Tue 22 Jan 2013
Author: rovers.co.uk

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Last-gasp heartache feels like a defeat to Appleton.

Michael Appleton had mixed emotions after seeing his side pegged back in added time against Brighton on Tuesday evening.

Jordan Rhodes' first half penalty looked to have set Rovers on their way to a welcome three points, but a spot-kick from David Lopez deep into injury time at the end of the game meant a share of the spoils after the home side had dominated for long spells.

"Finishing the game 1-1 it feels like a defeat for myself and the players, and I'm sure it almost feels like a victory for Brighton," Appleton told Radio Rovers after the game.

"It was a game that I thought we controlled, it went exactly how it went in our heads on what we were working on all week in training.

"We knew exactly how we would play against Brighton, we pretty much controlled the way they wanted to play and how we wanted them to play.

"Everything was working to plan obviously until the last seconds of the game."

There was a marked improvement over Saturday's display against Charlton, with the Rovers boss delighted with the backing his side got from the home fans.

"The fans were fantastic for us tonight, they responded well after Saturday's game," added the manager.

"The players played very very well, we went a little bit longer when we had to, we passed the ball with a purpose at times.

"I just thought there was a real controlled play to us tonight, I felt so relaxed on the sideline, I just didn't think we'd concede a goal which is credit to the players.

"It is a bit disappointing when you've got the fourth official screaming for 45 seconds down his mic saying 'that's it, that's it' to then concede."