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Joe's honest assessment

Rothwell impressed on his first start in a couple of months against Sheffield United

30 December 2018

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Joe Rothwell says Rovers need to find a solution to conceding goals following a disappointing defeat at Sheffield United on Saturday.

Despite being on top for a large chunk of the game, three goals in less than 10 minutes earned the Blades victory on home turf as Rovers suffered a third successive festive defeat.

It was Rothwell's first start since he was named in the XI against West Bromwich Albion back in October, but the attacker was left frustrated following the defeat to United, which came following the dismissal of Richie Smallwood with 20 minutes remaining.

“I think we were well in the game when they had 11 men, and then against 10 men we took control," the 23-year-old explained to iFollow Rovers.

“Richie's sending off changed the game, they got back into it, took control, got the goal, and for some reason our whole mindset and mentality seemed to change.

“It's happened week in, week out, where we concede one and then concede another goal five or 10 minutes later. When that happens the game is done.

“It's something we need to look at and put right. It's the most frustrating thing. We can't seem to put our finger on why it's happening. It needs to be put right.

“I think we're one of the teams up there who have lost the most points from winning positions. For some reason we can't seem to see games out."

There were question marks surrounding Anthony Taylor's decision to send off Smallwood, and Rothwell felt the decision was a harsh one.

“I couldn't see the Richie sending off too well, but from what I did see it looked as if Richie tackled Benno [Elliott Bennett] more than he did their man," Joe added.

“Richie has said he's not touched their man. It's disappointing and they ended up taking full advantage of that.

“They scored and we seemed to drop off and let them dictate things. We need to see why it keeps happening.”


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