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Doncaster Rovers v Wycombe: Keepmoat must become a fortress, says Grant McCann

Grant McCann: Makes home bow today.
Grant McCann: Makes home bow today.
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YOU have to go back six years for the last time that Doncaster Rovers won their opening two league matches.

This statistic serves as a spot of inspiration for Rovers today, and manager Grant McCann’s clear preoccupation is for his side to start as they mean to go on in terms of performance levels in front of a home support who have witnessed patchy fare over a good few years at the Keepmoat Stadium.

Home form has been a thorny issue for a number of McCann’s predecessors, showcased by Rovers’ sequence at the end of last season with five Keepmoat matches from mid-April onwards failing to yield a single win.

In each of their last three campaigns at League One level Rovers have won a mediocre seven matches in each respective season from 23 matches, a statistic which displays consistency of the wrong sort.

It is a topic that has clearly not passed by the Northern Irishman ahead of his first home match in charge.

He said: “I am looking forward to my first home game in the league and want to make sure we create a good atmosphere. But it will only be good if we are producing on the pitch.

“Your home form is key. If you want to have a promotion season then you have to pick up as many points as you can at home.

“It would be wrong for me to say we have to win every game at home as it does not work like that. But we want to make sure we have a huge chunk of wins here this year and whatever you get on the road becomes a valuable point or three.

“Home form is key. We want to make sure this place becomes a fortress. Although it is a lovely place to come and play, and a lovely pitch and facilities, we have got to make sure that we take that advantage and not opposition teams.”

Despite a fine opening-weekend 3-2 win at Southend United, McCann was the first to admit that the game resembled a bit of a ‘roller-coaster’ with Rovers’ meticulous chief –unhappy with some aspects of the performance – seeking an upgrade in some areas today.

“We know we need to improve. The first half was not good enough and we did not do the things we set out to,” he added,.

“But for 20 minutes we were outstanding and I am looking forward to the group having a 30-, 40- or 50-minute spell to see what we can do. That is our next aim.”