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'It's all about Saturday now' - says Whitts

Peter Whittingham says Rovers must quickly turn their attentions to Bristol Rovers

11 April 2018

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Peter Whittingham was pleased to be back out on the pitch at Gillingham last night, but disappointed Rovers couldn't come away with all three points.

The experienced midfielder was making his first appearance of 2018, having spent several weeks on the sidelines with a persistent calf problem.

The 33-year-old replaced Craig Conway early in the second half at the Priestfield Stadium, but was unable to help Rovers unlock a resolute Gillingham defence, as the two teams played out a goalless draw.

Whittingham insists Rovers must quickly put the result to bed and focus on returning to winning ways at Bristol Rovers on Saturday. 

"It was good to be back out there," he said. "I would just have prefered for it to come in better circumstances.

"It was just one of those games where it never really got going.

"They made it tough for us. They're a solid team who know what they're all about. It's just frustrating for us that we couldn't get the three points.

"I don't really remember too many opportunities in the game to be honest, so 0-0 was probably a fair result.

"We were waiting for that one chance, but unfortunately it didn't come. We'll just keep plugging away, think about the form that we're in and we look forward to Saturday.

"Earlier on in the season you would have been taken the point and thought 'that's not a bad result', but given the form that we're in and the way we're playing at the minute, we're disappointed that we haven't come away with the three points.

"But they're a good team, they played to their strengths well, so we move on. It's all about Saturday now and if we can pick up three points then all is forgotten.

"When you don't play that well it's all about not losing and we didn't do that today, which is obviously good news, but it's all about Saturday now."

Whilst watching on from the sidelines, Whittingham has seen Rovers string together a remarkable run of results, with Tony Mowbray's men losing just one of their last 30 league games.

That fine form has propelled Rovers to the top of the table, where they currently trail leaders Wigan Athletic by just goal difference.

With Shrewsbury Town just five points behind, with a game in hand, Whittingham insists he has never known a promotion race like it, but he is confident Rovers can come out on top.

"The boys have done really well," he added. "I got injured at a bad time and was out for quite a while and it coincided with the boys doing really well, but hopefully I can help towards the end of the season now.

"As I said earlier, to come here (to Gillingham) and be disappointed with a point it shows how far we have come. It's just testament to how well the boys have done.

"It's the business end of the season now and we need to be picking up three points, so hopefully we can do that on Saturday.

"We're in a good position. We know that Shrewsbury have got a game in hand, but it's about what we do. If we win all our games then they can't catch us.  

"I've never known it before, with three teams all likely to finish on 90-plus points.

"Come the end of the season, one team is going to be disappointed, which is part and parcel of football, but we just need to make sure it's not us.

"It's about what we do now between now and the end of the season and we need to keep picking up points."

Can't make it down to Bristol Rovers on Saturday? Fear not, we've arranged for a VIP beamback package for the clash against the Gas live to Ewood Park and you can purchase your tickets by clicking here.

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