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Downing ready to be involved

Deadline day signing could be in line for his Rovers debut at Rochdale

6 September 2017

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Paul Downing

New signing Paul Downing insists he's fit and ready to be involved, should he get the call to play at Rochdale this weekend.

With Charlie Mulgrew a doubt for Saturday's game after picking up an ankle injury on international duty with Scotland and Darragh Lenihan sidelined for several months after undergoing surgery on a fractured foot, Downing could be in line for his Rovers debut.

The 25-year-old defender, who joined Rovers on a season-long loan from MK Dons late on deadline day, has started three games this season - two in the Carabao Cup and one in the Checkatrade Trophy - and was on the bench for the Dons in Rovers' last league game at Ewood Park.

Having trained with his new team-mates over the past two days, Downing has been impressed with the quality in the squad and he can't wait to get going.

“I’m ready," he said. "I think I had had a good pre-season.

“Although I've not played in the league yet I've played two games in the cup and another one in the Checkatrade.

“So I'm up to speed and feel fit and strong, so if needed I'll be ready to give my best.

“The earlier you get the opportunity you want to show what you can do.

“We have a couple of difficult away games coming up, but if I’m selected I will be ready to go.

"The first couple of days in training, the quality of some of the players and the experience we've got, hopefully if we can perform on a matchday and a weekend then it's going to be difficult for teams to stop us.

"Obviously we're a big club and we're a scalp for everyone in League One, so we've got to make sure we compete first and foremost, and if we do that then our quality will shine through."

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