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Williams: Strong spirit in the camp

Del talks personnel, positioning and Plymouth

2 February 2018

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Derrick Williams feels there is an excellent spirit in the camp ahead of the weekend trip to Plymouth Argyle, as Rovers look to extend the unbeaten league run to 19 games.

A mainstay in the side, Williams is now in his second season at Rovers and admits this is the closest squad he's been involved with since arriving in the summer of 2016.
 
“We had some good players in the Championship like Sam Gallagher and Marvin Emnes but now we have players like Bradley Dack. I’d say this squad is a closer one," the 25-year-old said honestly.
 
“You want to do well for each other. At the minute the perfect example is Richie Smallwood and Elliott Bennett - if one of them misses a tackle then the other one is there to have their back.
 
“You put your body on the line because you know the person next to you will do the same for you.
 
“It’s similar to when I was at Bristol City. We have a good squad of young players all wanting to kick on with our careers. We won’t get carried away and we want to make sure the top two is ours.
 
“I don’t really think about the 18 unbeaten. There’s pressure to be at the top. It’s something that comes with football and you have to be able to manage it.
 
“We could be and should be doing better. We are only one point in the top two and the team below has a game in hand so we still have plenty of hard work to do."
 
So, what about Plymouth? Another tricky test? Williams still has frustrating memories from the reverse fixture at Ewood Park back in October.
 
And does he feel at home at centre back having filled in in the absence of captain Charlie Mulgrew?
 
“It was a disappointing night against Plymouth at Ewood Park," he added. "They defended really well that night and I expect they’ll do the same at the weekend. They'll sit back and look to absorb the pressure.
 
“We’ll have to be clinical and not be sloppy and concede to play right into their hands.
 
“I have played centre back most of my career before changing to left back when I came here.
 
"I enjoy it and try to do something different when I bring the ball out. I do enjoy passing it out from the back and I'm happy to fill in wherever the gaffer wants me to really," he concluded.

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