Dan Clough column: Impressive Rovers back in contention
IT has been at times a tough season for Rovers fans but Saturday’s impressive win means we are still in the mix for promotion.
Many could have been forgiven for thinking that, having fallen seven points behind the pack, Rovers’ play-off hopes were over.
But after a win at Reading in which we proved we really can take on the league’s better sides on their own turf and win, we have thrown ourselves right back into contention.
Having moved back to within four points of the top six with a game in hand, as the Lancashire a Telegraph said yesterday, the race really is on.
It has been said on many occasions during this stop start campaign that ‘now is the time to put a run together’ and I am going to say it once more.
There are seven games in March, starting with a must-win trip to Bolton on Saturday, so now is the time to start winning.
Looking back over this season’s results it is very much a case of ‘what if?’ What if we had beaten teams like Blackpool, Sheffield Wednesday, Barnsley etc.
Teams that have struggled in the league and yet we have only managed to take a point from. Seeing potential wins become draws has been our downfall this season but thankfully we are still in with a shout.
We have a very young side and with maturity will come a greater sense of composure and hopefully a better ability to kill a game.
A case in point being veteran keeper Paul Robinson who is yet to taste defeat in the league this season (he missed the Forest game through injury).
In the six league games Robbo has played in, we have won three and drawn three, kept four clean sheets – three in a row in our most recent games – and only conceded three goals.
Now that is the sort of form that can potentially lead to promotion.
After Bolton, who have just won for the first time this year, comes the big one.
Burnley have been in explosive form this season blowing away all who get in their way at home, but hopefully the pressure of coming to Ewood will be too much for them.
Bournemouth visit us after that, followed by games against Huddersfield, Leicester, Watford and Millwall.
If we can continue our fine form and win, say, four or five of those games, then we really would be putting ourselves in with a chance of reaching the play-offs.
Come on you Blues!