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Same outcome but less drama

Bradley Dack remembers the 'carnage' from last season's trip to tackle Stoke City

29 November 2019

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For a neutral spectator it would have arguably been a game of the season contender when Rovers played Stoke City at the bet365 Stadium in 2018-19.

But ahead of this season's trip to the Potteries, Bradley Dack remembers it a little differently.

He played his part in a terrific opening 77 minutes for Tony Mowbray's men last time we were at the venue, scoring the first of the afternoon before Danny Graham and Harrison Reed added to the tally.

Dack could have made it 4-0 before Stoke came alive and went in search of an unlikely comeback, throwing on Peter Crouch and scoring two goals in as many minutes thanks to Saido Berahino and Tom Ince.

Rovers had to withstand some heavy pressure from the hosts, and luck was on their side too when Berahino crashed a late penalty against the upright before the danger was cleared.

And although a third successive win would be perfect for Dack and Rovers, the 25-year-old doesn't want the same havoc during this trip to Staffordshire.

“Last season at Stoke was carnage," he reflected to iFollow Rovers with a smile.

"It was a crazy game where we played brilliantly for 70 minutes, got 3-0 up, I missed a chance to make it 4-0 by hitting the post after Jack Butland saved my first attempt.

“I think 4-0 would have been game over, but 3-0 should have been game over. I remember they brought Peter Crouch on and he caused havoc.

“They managed to nick two, David made some unbelievable saves, they got a penalty, (Saido) Berahino hit the underside of the bar and we managed to get the game won in the end.

“It was a weird game but brilliant. To go to a team that had only just come down from the Premier League and win in their own back yard, it was up there with one of our best results of the season."

Whilst Rovers' recent home form has been excellent, Dack admits that visits elsewhere need to have happier endings.

“Our away form does need to be better," he added honestly.

"We’ve lost the last four on the road and that’s not good enough if you want to get into the top six.

“We have to be stronger defensively and I think the boys at the back will have been a boost in confidence after the clean sheet on Wednesday night.

“We have to pick up points away from home and Stoke’s a place where we believe we can get the three points.

“They have a new manager who Corry (Evans) knows well so hopefully we can take some tips from him and try to get the win."

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