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Mowbray urges his players to embrace the pressure

2 July 2017

Tony Mowbray insists Rovers have to embrace the pressure of being favourites for promotion this season.

The manager is eager to create an environment at the training ground where the full focus is on winning lots of games and trying to be at the top of the table.

He is confident the players will buy into that, but he has also stressed to the squad that life in League One won’t be easy.

“We don’t mind pressure,” said the Rovers boss. “I spoke to the players and said ‘let’s have a bit of pressure’.

“If you’re a big club, as we are in this league, you have to deal with pressure. We expect to go and win football matches and that’s ok. We don’t mind that.

“Hopefully the signings that we make will add a bit more pressure because hopefully they’re going to be good players that can get the job done for us.

“We have to be positive. We have to try and put a squad together that can get through 10 really hard months.

“It’s ok thinking about the opening day of the season on a nice pitch with the sun shining, but the reality is cold February nights, with fans travelling three or four hours on a coach and getting back in the early hours of the morning and hopefully the team have given them a victory on the road somewhere and that’s what League One is about.

“There’s a lot of travelling, there’s a lot of games, they come thick and fast, every team is really difficult to play against, really hard-working, big, strong and honest teams, and we have to be ready for that.

“It’s a very, very tough league. It’s an attritional league. The pitches aren’t great in the winter, because they haven’t got the revenue to put lights on the pitches to keep the grass growing. The floodlights aren’t at the same standard as they are in the Premier League or the Championship.

“So I’m just trying to create an image for the players that they need to be ready for a tough, tough season.

“The fans have to be ready for that too and the message to the supporters is we won’t win every game. We will suffer some setbacks along the way, which we will have to be able to bounce back from and win the next one.

“We don’t expect to win 4-0 every week. They are really tough football matches and yet we have to grind it out and hope that we have enough quality in the team to win the tight games as they come along. 

“I want us to have that mentality that we can deal with the pressure of being one of the biggest clubs in the league and we expect to win games, but we know how tough it’s going to be.”


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