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Mowbray reacts to Wigan draw

Read the thoughts of the Rovers manager following Saturday's stalemate at the DW Stadium

28 October 2017

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Tony Mowbray hailed his players' fighting spirit following the goalless draw against Wigan and also had his say on Elliott Bennett's controversial red card.

Rovers had the midfielder dismissed following a second yellow card for simulation in the second half and had to see out the game with nine men when substitute Harry Chapman limped off, with no further changes available.

Speaking after the game, Mowbray was pleased to see his side grind out a point and discussed the game's major talking point.

"Our players deserve a lot of credit," he said. "I thought we took the game to them and played on the front foot in the first half. It was everything we'd worked on.

"I was pleased that they took the work onto the pitch, but the sadness of today is that everyone will be talking about the officials. 

"It was a difficult day for them and I'm wary of standing here and criticising them; they're young guys learning their trade.

"If I could give them any advice it would be to have more humility in dealing with the players and managers.

"But it was a good game between two of the top teams in this league with the same aspirations. We saw it out with nine men and were on the front foot for the first hour. It looked like we could have won."

When asked about Bennett's red card, he added: "We've just had the incident up on the laptops. Elliott's running at such speed, he gets the ball past the boy and either has to jump over it or get absolutely smashed.

"If the referee doesn't think it's a foul, just play on. For me, he had to get out of the way of it, otherwise you're going to smash your leg on his knee.

"We have to accept it. It's a second yellow so I don't know if we can appeal, but it's never a sending off. We know the boy and we know the player and he's distraught in there to be honest.

"It's done, we have to move on now. If there was any contact, he had to move out of the way. In my opinion, there's no need to be overly clever. A dive? I don't think so."

Rovers had a great chance to win it on the break late on, as substitutes Danny Graham and Paul Caddis got in behind the Wigan defence, but they were unable to capitalise on the opportunity.

"If Danny had played in Caddis, we're talking about 1-0 with Caddis the goalscorer," added the manager.

"Wigan pushed both full-backs on, so Danny came on to get hold of the ball and run in behind. We'll take the point, but the greater concern now is moving forward without Bennett and Chapman."

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