Doncaster Rovers: Grant McCann gives his verdict on Salford City defeat and disallowed goal
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Doncaster dominated possession and managed no fewer than 20 attempts at goal but just four of them were on target.
Salford also managed just four efforts on target but three of them found the back of the net courtesy of their in-form striker Matt Smith, who now has 13 goals for the season.
McCann said: "It's an old cliché, the football match is won and lost in both boxes, and we weren't good enough in both boxes.
"The first two goals Smith scores, we know his strengths, he's probably one of the best centre-forwards in the division and he's played at higher levels. We could compete with it tonight.
"He probably could have had four."
Smith nodded Salford in front with just one minute on the clock after finding himself free inside the box.
He doubled his side's advantage in similar fashion 25 minutes later.
Rovers had their moments, with Salford keeper Alex Cairns denying Harrison Biggins with a brilliant first-half save and Joe Ironside seeing a goal ruled out for offside after the break.
Doncaster also hit the bar twice in the second half through Zain Westbrooke and Luke Molyneux.
McCann said: "They have done a job on us tonight. How we haven't scored is very frustrating for me.
"I'll always give credit where credit is due, tonight I was pleased with the boys. They kept going."
McCann insisted Ironside's goal should have stood and added: "If that goes in, it's a different story.
"Unfortunately, we didn't get the rub of the green tonight."
Doncaster had been in control when Ironside headed past Cairns to halve the deficit, only to see the linesman's flag raised when he got up to celebrate.
Minutes later Smith sealed his hat-trick to kill the contest, with McCann describing the moment it hit the back of the net as a "sucker punch" for his side.
He said: "Fair play to the boy, he was hard to handle. We struggled with him.
"I just didn't sense our aggression, our hunger, that real grit to put the ball in the back of the net."