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Club News

Gaffer on a Sunday

17 March 2013

Steve Evans talks to

We continue with our weekly Gaffer on a Sunday feature and we start with yesterday’s away defeat to Cheltenham Town.

Having now had the time to watch a DVD of yesterday's defeat at Cheltenham Town, what are your thoughts?

At times you watch a match DVD and very often you see things differently from what you originally thought, but having watched the full match back again this morning I can say this was not one of them.

Firstly, as a manager and staff we look in before out and I believe I picked the wrong team and system for this particular match especially given the dreadful playing surface. Moving on from that, we had a lot of the ball in the first 30 minutes, but we lacked creativity and failed to deliver crosses into the opposition penalty area when we had the time and opportunity.

All three goals we conceded are individual errors but those lads will learn from that. This is the first match in months where I would consider our performance to be abject, it lacked a desire to succeed and when that happens in a football match you know what the score is going to be.

The lads knew afterwards the performance was not satisfactory, we let ourselves and the supporters down but this squad of players will bounce back. Many will write us off now, but I firmly believe we will bounce back.

Given the results in League Two yesterday we are still very much fighting for an automatic promotion spot, are you still confident this can be achieved?

Yes absolutely and as I said I have the greatest of faith in the squad of players we have. Yesterday was a bad day for all of us and it came at a time when we have been in really good form, but too many players underperformed on the day, that is not something we are used to.

League 2 is a tough league and there is great quality from top-to-bottom. All the teams fighting with us for promotion have some very tough matches coming up so there will be many twists and turns over the next six weeks, but we are right in the mix for promotion, others who say we are not this morning are wrong. Go and ask Cheltenham, Northampton, Fleetwood, Burton Albion and Port Vale supporters if they are in the promotion race and work it out from those responses if we are. If you want to be negative you can be but no one inside Rotherham United is.

How is the injury situation?

There was no fresh injuries from yesterday. Craig Morgan has come through the match, for me the lad was one of a few who did well yesterday.

Mark Bradley has a small fracture of the foot and his recovery period will be a couple of weeks ahead of schedule from what was first diagnosed, so let us all hope that allows him to be back for the last two weeks of the season but no one is counting on that, it will be a bonus for all of us.

Kari Arnason has now served his two match suspension and will now be available.

We have a home reserve match with Oldham on Tuesday, will you include any first-team squad players?

Depending on the pitch not being anywhere near as bad as Cheltenham, hopefully the answer will be yes. I will need to speak with the staff but I would think that the likes of Shearer, Arnason, Tonge, Odejayi, Agard, Kearns and possibly Noble might have some game time but that will be decided tomorrow.

Are you hopeful we can add to the squad in the week ahead?

As is well known we are trying to do this. What I will not do is add players for the sake of it, we will only bring players in who have something to offer us that we need more of or we do not already have. I will continue to work hard in this area and we will see what can be done.

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