Andy Butler urges Doncaster Rovers players to block out external criticism

Andy Butler has encouraged his Doncaster Rovers players to cut out external noise and criticism as they look to get their season back on track.

Saturday, 10th April 2021, 9:59 am

The Rovers boss admits some players are influenced by the messages they receive on social media but insists footballers must display a thick skin in the face of criticism.

Rovers have won just two of their last 14 league matches to fall five points off the play-off places, bringing an inevitable backlash from sections of the club’s support.

Butler says all that should matter to the players is that he continues to show faith in them, and so do their team mates.

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Andy Butler addresses his squad

“People do get criticised and it does influence some people’s mindsets,” he said. “Social media is massive and people get influenced by that.

“If you’re a professional footballer or manager, you have to have a thick skin and you can’t let opinions determine who you are and what kind of character you are.

“As long as they know I trust in them and the people above trust in me, that is all that matters.

“You come together as a squad and a team and use the negativity to push you on.

“I’m not saying there is a lot of negativity but for some players it may impact on them.

“It’s about getting that out of them and making sure they know I’ve got full belief in them.

“I’ll never question their attitude because they’re all professional footballers and they want to win games.

“They just at the moment have found it difficult to transfer it onto the pitch.

“Hopefully this is the time where the penny has dropped and they’re ready to go.”

Butler himself was active on social media prior to taking the manager role last month but has withdrawn from various platforms since.

“Instantly after becoming manager I didn’t look at social media any more,” he said.

“It can be used for positive stuff as well. Either way, it doesn’t affect me because I’ve got a thick skin.

“I trust mine and my staff’s abilities. Nothing anyone can say to me will change my approach and how I manage my team.

“I have got a way I go about things and I’ve got a belief in my abilities and this squad to get performances and results.”

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In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.