DONCASTER Rovers look set to be without striker Nathan Tyson for today’s trip to Oldham Athletic as they look to recover from their Boxing Day home defeat against Scunthorpe.
Tyson was withdrawn 76 minutes into the game which resulted in Rovers’ second defeat in 11 matches.
Manager Darren Ferguson bemoaned a lack of tempo from his Rovers side as their run of seven straight wins against neighbours Scunthorpe came to a grinding halt.
Paddy Madden netted the only goal after 20 minutes as Rovers turned in a poor performance.
“We did the opposite of what I wanted,” said Ferguson.
“Even at start of the game there was a real lack of tempo and urgency to us.
“I think Scunthorpe probably turned up thinking it was a tough game and we wanted to make it that way. But it was really laboured. They’ve got an experienced team, especially in the middle of the park and I think after 15 minutes they will have had a lot of confidence and thought they had a right chance. We went 1-0 down and in the second half we were slightly better, we huffed and puffed a bit more.
“But you can’t have a first 45 minutes like that. It cost us the game.”
Ferguson spoke about how The Iron had countered his side’s set-up, saying: “They’ve done what a couple of teams have done against us, which is play three right up against the centre halves which means it’s difficult for our wing-backs to be released against their full-backs.
“We worked a lot on that but the biggest thing for me is that if you don’t keep the ball well enough, it becomes a very difficult game for us in any system.
“Tactics play a large part in a game of football but today it wasn’t the reason we didn’t get the result.
“They won every tackle, every second ball and that’s surprising. We were way below what I expect from my team. It was a surprising and a disappointing performance.
“We have to have the mentality that although we’ve been on an all right run, there is no reason for it to stop. We’ve just got to keep going, and keep hold of that mometum.”
Doncaster Rovers: Stuckmann, Alcock, Butler, Taylor-Sinclair; Lund (Stewart 53), Coppinger, Middleton (Keegan 46), Grant, Evina; Williams, Tyson (N’Guessan 76). Unused substitutes: McCullough, Chaplow, Mandeville, Marosi.
Scunthorpe United: Daniels, Clarke (Wiseman 85), Mirfin (Goode 69); Canavan, Laird, Bishop, Dawson (Ness 62), King, Williams, Madden, Rowe. Unused substitutes: van Veen, Henderson, Anyon, Wootton.
Referee: S Attwell (Warwickshire).
Man of the match: Paddy Madden.