FERGIE’S RE­LIEF AF­TER STUT­TER

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Stephen Thirkill

DAR­REN Ferguson feels there is still room for im­prove­ment at table­top­ping Doncaster Rovers de­spite an­other three points at Steve­nage.

The for­mer Posh boss was an­gry af­ter Rovers nearly chucked away the points de­spite hav­ing led 3-0 at the break.

Rovers surged into a com­mand­ing lead with three goals in 13 first-half min­utes, be­fore Steve­nage pulled two goals back.

And al­though a Jamie Jones’ own goal made it 4-2, Rowan Liburd hit an 89th-minute goal, be­fore Rovers sur­vived a mas­sive goal­mouth scram­ble in in­jury time.

Ferguson said: “You have to give credit to Steve­nage, they made it very dif­fi­cult for us.

“These games away from home are the ones where you need to dig in and we dug in well in the end.

“The goal that made it 4-2 was a key mo­ment for us, es­pe­cially com­ing so soon af­ter they had made it 3-2.

“We’ve won and that’s the main thing, but there’s got to be im­prove­ment.

“There will be changes for Tues­day night and I’m fo­cus­ing on that be­fore any­thing else.

“We know our away form has to im­prove and to get the win here is a good start.”

Steve­nage boss Dar­ren Sarll ad­mit­ted his side paid the price for a slow start.

“We gave our­selves far too much to do and our de­fend­ing just was not good enough,” Sar­lle said.

“You can­not give a team like Doncaster a three-goal start. We were much bet­ter in the sec­ond half and showed a great spirit.

“We pushed them all the way and could have got back in it at the end, but we paid the price for start­ing too slow.

“We have al­ways wanted to be a pro­mo­tion- think­ing club. Doncaster are top and show the bench­mark. We came into the game with some good re­sults and good or­gan­i­sa­tion. It was not there in the first half.”

The York­shire­men hit the front when But­ler headed home James Cop­pinger’s free-kick in the 27th minute.

Liam Man­dev­ille hit his sixth goal in as many games on 34 min­utes as Doncaster took a firm grip of the game.

Marko Marosi su­perbly tipped Char­lie Lee’s header onto the post on 36 min­utes, be­fore Matty Blair in­creased the lead fur­ther with a 39thminute vol­ley.

Steven Schu­macher, Tom Pett and Dean Wells all tested Marosi af­ter the restart as the home side ral­lied.

And they got their re­ward when Pett and Fraser Franks scored on 61 and 72 min­utes re­spec­tively to push Rovers on the back foot and give the home fans some­thing to shout about.

Jones’ own goal a minute later ap­peared to have ended any hopes of a dra­matic fin­ish at Broad­hall Way.

But Liburd found the back of the net with a minute to go as vis­i­tors Doncaster were left cling­ing on for the win in stop­page time.

PICTURES: TGSPHOTO

STAR MAN ANDY BUT­LER Doncaster HAVE SOME OF THAT: Matty Blair of Doncaster Rovers scores the third goal and cel­e­brates

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