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Control the controllable

“We’ve worked hard to prepare the best that we can”

8 September 2019

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Gemma Donnelly says her Rovers team are fully focused on taking a result from Villa Park on Sunday.

She knows it won’t be easy against a side who have come from behind twice to win their opening two games, while Rovers slipped to consecutive defeats.

The pitch is also expected to be one of the biggest they play on this season, but that can’t be a barrier to success, Donnelly believes.

“We can only control what we can control,” the Rovers boss said pre-match.

“We’ve worked hard in training to prepare the best we can. I know my players and what they are capable of.  

“Villa have started the season really well. They’ve brought in some really good players this season so we know it’s going to be a tough ask with it being away and Villa in really good form.  

“We’ve tried some new things and formations and made them aware of changes that may need to be made during the game in order to nullify threats from Villa.

“The analysis team have been hard at work looking at their games and players. We can do as much as we can to plan for the game but it will be down to the players on the day.

“I hope that we’ve prepped them well enough. Most of all I want them to give a really good account of themselves.

“We’re not asking for miracles but I’m asking that they offer reasonable competition and that they give us 110%.

“Then I can’t fault them. And I think that’s what they’ll do.”

Following defeats against Lewes and London Bees, Rovers have brought in some new faces during the international break, with Danielle Whitham rejoining the club and Fran Stenson coming in on loan from Arsenal.  

“It’s given us a couple of weeks of preparation and it’s afforded us some time for players to get back into shape from knocks.

“Based on those two games we’re not too far away but Villa are a very different ask. We’ve strengthened as well so we’re as good as we can be going into the game.”

Follow updates of the game on Twitter, @RoversLadies, or sign up for the FA Player to watch live and free. 

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