Doncaster Rovers: On the beach? Then get out!

Paul Dickov
Paul Dickov

Paul Dickov says any of his players who think the season is already over should leave the club now.

The mood around the Rovers camp suggests there has been an acceptance that a top six finish is now out of reach as they sit ten points and seven places adrift with just five games remaining.

But Dickov – who has yet to publicly concede defeat in the play-off race – insists his side still has plenty to play for and he will accept no slacking between now and May 3.

“One thing we can’t do is think the season is over regardless of where we are in the league,” Dickov said.

“Ultimately we’ve got players playing for their futures and contracts, be it here or elsewhere.

“With five games left we go in with the mentality of winning as any points as we can and finishing as high up the table as we can.

“We’ve got a lot to play for.

“We’ve still go 15 points left and we want to finish as high as we can.

“If anyone thinks we’re on the beach, they can go now.”

Rovers travel to Leyton Orient tonight with the hosts sitting outside the bottom four on goal difference alone.

Dickov expects a real battle from Orient but wants his side to take the game to the strugglers rather than reacting to them.

He said: “We don’t want to match the intensity of any side, we want to be beating it regardless of who needs what.

“We’ve got Leyton Orient scrapping for their lives to stay in the division and we need to be ready for that.

Rovers have won just once in eight matches heading into tonight’s clash at Brisbane Road.

Dickov says the players should not feel like they owe supporters good performances over the last five games because they should feel that burden in every game.

He said: “Every time you go out you owe it to yourself, your club and supporters.

“It’s not just after a few bad performances and results. That has to be your starting point.

“That’s the mentality I’m looking for going forward with this club.”

Luke McCullough will continue to sit out action tonight but has returned to light training as he continues his comeback from a knee injury.

Paul Keegan began light running yesterday but is still several weeks from a return from his knee problem.

Nathan Tyson should be fit despite sitting out training yesterday due to a knock picked up against Sheffield United last week.

An illness kept Abdul Razak out of the squad against Rochdale on Saturday and he is likely to miss out once again tonight.