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Opportunity to impress

“The team continue to learn each week that they will be punished for mistakes”

1 November 2019

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Gemma Donnelly sees this weekend’s game away at Sheffield United as the perfect opportunity for players to force their way into her starting 11.

The two Championship teams face off in the Continental Cup, with Rovers taking one point from their opening two fixtures in the competition.

Donnelly is looking to freshen up the squad for this latest encounter and says players will get their opportunity to impress during Sunday’s game.

“We’re enjoying the experience of being involved in the Continental Cup,” Donnelly said in her pre-match presser.

“It’s not thrown any curveballs given that the teams we have played we have met in the league already.

“We’re finding our feet so it’s less of a priority than picking up points in the league.

“We’ll be giving players that may not necessarily have seen minutes so far this season a chance to compete against top teams, but also for positions.

“The team will be mixed on Sunday so I hope the girls that are given the opportunity put in a performance worthy of giving me headaches for the next league game selection.”

The boss wants the team to take a lot from the draw against Coventry United, when Rovers let their lead slip in the final stages.

“We’ve probably seen during the week, it’s too late to put things right from the weekend.

“The girls are well aware that not being clinical in front of goal ultimately cost them because it should have been three points to us, which would have taken some pressure off.

“Although we moved up the league by one place and have got four points out of six from the last two league games, we are right in the thick of things at the bottom of the table.

“So it’s important for all of the squad to recognise that we can’t afford to miss such opportunities moving forwards.”

Donnelly also sees lessons to be learned from the Blues’ league game against Sheffield – a 3-2 home defeat at Bamber Bridge last month.   

“The two goals were quite similar. It was sloppy defending after we’d worked so hard to nullify their threats.

“There’s no doubts they are a quality team so to be in that position of being level, we were perhaps quite fortunate, but the strategy for that game that had been particularly effective.

“And so to concede late in the game was disappointing. The team continue to learn each week that they will be punished for mistakes.

“We just have to keep working on those.”

It's a 2pm kick-off at Olympic Legacy Park and you can follow all the action on Twitter, @RoversLadies. 

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