Doncaster Rovers: No more final day drama, pleads Brentford hero James Coppinger

James Coppinger celebrates winning the League One title in 2013 after an incredible finish to the game at Brentford.
James Coppinger celebrates winning the League One title in 2013 after an incredible finish to the game at Brentford.

James Coppinger will never ever forget his goal - and the crazy finish - at Brentford that sealed Doncaster Rovers’ promotion to the Championship on the final day of the 2012/13 season.

But the 36-year-old is not willing to go through all that again!

Rovers currently lead the way in League Two and have an 11-point buffer to fourth-placed Luton Town, who they meet at the Keepmoat Stadium tomorrow.

But after a run of three games without a win, and their first defeat in 11 at Carlisle United on Tuesday night, Coppinger wants his teammates to ram home their advantage well before the season reaches its climax.

“I couldn’t think of anything worse to be honest,” laughed Coppinger, when asked if he could a handle a repeat of what happened at Griffin Park.

“For me, experiencing it, it’s trying to make people realise if you can do it now, if you can do it in the next ten games, then you relieve the pressure from everybody - not just the players, but the fans, everyone involved in the club. It’s important we realise that and we’ll do our best to do that.”

He added: “We’re so close to where we want to be and achieving what we set out to do at the start of the season and sometimes the hardest part is to finish it off.

“With 15 games to go, I always think this is the hardest hurdle to get over. People start to talking about you being top of the league, so many points ahead, and people start to listen to it.

“It’s important you forget about that and focus on the actual games, focus on what you can do and how you can affect the team. It’s a massive factor and we’ll be making people aware of that.”

Darren Ferguson’s men endured a frustrating night in front of goal during their 2-1 defeat at Brunton Park this week - but Coppinger is confident Rovers will have their shooting boots on against the Hatters.

“We’re not doing anything different,” he said. “We’re obviously still creating chances. If we weren’t creating chances that would be more of a problem.

“Every time we’ve had a disappointing result this season we’ve responded really well. We’ll be looking to do that on Saturday.

“To get beat like we did on Tuesday was frustrating but I’d much rather get beaten in that manner than get annihilated and not have any chances and come away thinking ‘where are we going to create a chance from?’.

“We’ve got people that can turn a game and create so all we need to do is put the ball in the back of the net. “We’ve done that on plenty of occasions this season so I’m looking forward to Saturday.”