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Kinder calls for commitment, energy and desire ahead of U21 cup final

19 April 2015

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Rovers' Under-21s head to St. Mary's on Monday night with the aim of lifting the U21 Premier League Cup.

Nothing could separate the two teams when they met six days ago in the first encounter at Ewood Park as the two hardworking teams played out an entertaining goalless draw to leave the tie finely poised.

Rovers now make the long journey south for the second leg, with coach Eric Kinder hoping that they can put on another good performance to win the coveted prize.

"We gave a good account of ourselves on Monday and I think secretly Southampton were a little bit shocked," Kinder told "I'm not saying they underestimated us because I know [Southampton Under-21s coach] Martin Hunter too well to know he wouldn't do that, but I think they were a little bit surprised how well we did. 

"That will make it even harder for us because if it was a one-off game and it was going to extra-time the pendulum probably would've swung towards us as we were starting to create chances. 

"Now Southampton have got home advantage and they realise that we're not going to be a pushover, so we're going to have to rely on a bit of luck and things going our way. You never know. It's gone our way so far in this competition."
Rovers will travel with the same squad that featured in the goalless draw at Ewood, with just Devarn Green an injury doubt after he limped out of the first leg with a tight hamstring.

If Green doesn't make it, then his replacement last Monday, 17-year-old Lewis Mansell, is expected to step up once more.

Kinder added: "We'll go with the same plan. We'll play the game. We won't go and defend and hope we catch them on the break - we can't do that because we'll get beat. We need to just go there and play our normal game. If we get a bit of luck and things go our way then who knows?

“We won't change. We haven't changed all season. We've just gone out and played, tried to develop players and tried to make them better so it gives the first team manager an opportunity to select them for Championship football.

“One thing's for sure, we'll have the same commitment, the same energy and desire to go and win the game as we have done in all the games in this competition.

“Every time we seem to find an extra gear. It's catching everyone's imagination and we just want to finish it off if we can."

For supporters planning to go to St. Mary's on Monday night, tickets are priced at £3 for Adults and £1 for Concessions.

The match will be shown live on Sky Sports 1 from 6.45pm, kick-off is at 7.00pm.

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