FERGIE’S A HARD MAN TO PLEASE
DONCASTER ROVERS manager Darren Ferguson has demanding standards.
The son of fiery former Manchester United boss Sir Alex saw his side climb to second in the League Two table with a fifth win in six games.
But he was not happy with Rovers’ display after this hardfought 2-0 victory over Newport County.
Goals in each half from James Coppinger and Andy Williams were enough to see off struggling Newport.
But Ferguson felt his players were well below their best.
“I’m delighted with the win and the clean sheet,” said the Rovers boss.
“The three points is important going into three tough games now, but performance-wise the players know that we set certain standards and we didn’t get to anywhere near the level we can.
“It was a frustrating afternoon and even when it was 2-0 I never felt comfortable.
“We never really got going but we won and that’s the main thing.
“We’ll have to be a lot better next week against Luton.”
Coppinger was presented with a special shirt to commemorate his 500 appearances for the club and the fans at the Keepmoat Stadium sounded horns and showered the pitch with confetti in the 26th minute to honour their legendary midfield stalwart, who wears the number 26.
And the 35-year-old marked the occasion by converting a free-kick that he won on the edge of the box on 17 minutes to give his manager something to smile about.
“That is four goals and three assists in eight games, so he’s producing at the top end of the pitch, which is the most important thing,” added Ferguson.
Williams sealed the win just before the hour mark with a smart curling effort after Tommy Rowe had charged down an attempted clearance.
It left Newport County manager Warren Feeney with a feeling of deja vu as he bemoaned refereeing decisions from David Webb and defensive errors.
“I don’t think we played badly,” said Feeney, the former Northern Ireland international striker whose team have won just one game since March. “We had enough chances but we cannot keep giving teams goals. “There’ll not be many teams that come here and have a go and we created probably the best two chances of the first half and should have had a penalty. “But the free-kick is the story of our season. “They’re big decisions. I didn’t think it was a foul but it gives them the momentum. “I thought we played okay after that and we started the second half well. “But we gave away a stupid goal again.”
GOLDEN OLDIE: Doncaster Rovers midfielder James Coppinger celebrates his opening goal
GRAPPLE: Sean Rigg and Jordan Houghton tussle