Darren Ferguson has told his players to ‘tough it out’ as they continue to get to grips with life in League One.
The Scot came under fire from a section of supporters following last week’s self-inflicted 3-0 home loss to Walsall - an eighth league defeat this season.
But his team responded with a gritty 1-0 win at Bury on Saturday.
And Ferguson declared afterwards: “I think we’ve come a hell of a long way in the two years that I’ve been in the club.”
Victory saw Rovers, who host Scunthorpe United in the Checkatrade Trophy tonight (7.30pm), move up a couple of places to 17th in League One, still three points clear of the drop zone.
Ferguson acknowledged his side have been inconsistent so far this term and says his team must continue to ride the storm in the short term in order to benefit in the longer term.
“Every game we go into we want to win it and Saturday was no different,” said Ferguson.
“What I tried to concentrate on in the team-talk was that the long term plan of the football club won’t change.
“And it’s important we have to tough this period through.
“I think we’ve come a hell of a long way in the two years that I’ve been in the club.
“Perhaps positions in the league won’t suggest that but certainly if you were in the club you would know that.
“And what I spoke to them about was toughing this period through to get to the next bit, and that’s the important bit.
“That’s what they did on Saturday and we need to continue doing that.
“We’ve been very inconsistent this season but then again it’s a very tough league. We knew it would be this season.
“I feel we’ve been in every game apart from the last 30 minutes against Walsall where we let ourselves down. On Saturday we got a reaction.”
Meanwhile, Ferguson will hand his fringe players a chance to impress against Scunthorpe this evening.
Both sides have already qualified for the knockout stage.
The winners will top Group H and benefit from home advantage in the next round.