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Whitts feeling good and up for the fight

Peter Whittingham can't wait for the new season to get going

2 August 2017

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Peter Whittingham admits he is feeling the benefits of having been with the club since the start of pre-season.

The 32-year-old ended his 10-year association with Cardiff City, where he played over 450 games, when he joined Rovers on a two-year deal in mid-June.

Having spent the past five weeks doing double sessions and getting to know his new team-mates at Brockhall, Whitts insists he is feeling fit and can’t wait for the new campaign to get underway.

"As soon as the interest came about, I wanted it to happen quickly,” said the midfield ace. “I wanted to be here from the start.

"I know it was always going to be tough with the pre-season. I think a few players like to make it carry on a little bit longer so they miss a couple of days, but I wanted to be there from the start. I wanted to be in the mix and training with the lads and I feel as though that has helped me.

"I feel good. I haven't missed any training or anything like that, so I'm just looking forward to the season getting started now.

"There could be a lot of games in the first month, so we are going to need everyone and everyone is going to get game time, it is just a case of playing as well as you can and getting the results."

Having just dropped down from the Championship and as favourites to go straight back up, Whittingham expects Rovers to have a target on their backs this term.

He insists the players must be prepared for the fight and look to pick up points even when the team is not performing at its best.

"We are definitely going to be a scalp,” he added. “The club is not where it should be, so teams are going to come and play against us and it is going to be their FA Cup final. They are always going to want to get one over on us.

"It is going to be tough, so we are going to have to match that and we are going to have to do what we have been training for the last five weeks and do what we have to do to get the points.

"The group as a whole is really good. There’s a really good mix. The gaffer has kept the majority of the players that he wanted to, so there is no reason why we shouldn't be going straight back up.

"We need a good start, as all promotion teams do, and we also need to be picking up results when we are not playing well.

“It is a case of if things aren't going your way or you are not getting that little bit of luck, where you go and take a point or you take the three points and it just motors you up the table.

"There are going to be games where the other team don't want to play football because they know that that is your strength and they are not going to play to that.

“So there are going to be times when you are going to have to battle. It might be a 1-0 or it’s a lucky goal or a deflection. It is going to happen from time to time and we've just got to learn to deal with that."

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