Doncaster Rovers: 'I'm not completely satisfied' - Demanding Darren Moore reflects on the start to the season
A blank weekend could have afforded Darren Moore the opportunity to rest up after a breathless seven weeks in charge of Doncaster Rovers.
After all, he could easily be satisfied with his lot. Rovers are unbeaten in League One having taken eight points from a possible 12 at a time when the new manager has been attempting to implement his style on the squad.
Moore’s men could very easily have entered the weekend level on points with the top sides in the division, had their scheduled trip to Bolton Wanderers earlier in the month not been unexpectedly postponed by the opposition.
This blank weekend came about after the unfortunate expulsion of Bury from the EFL, delivering more disruption to Rovers and Moore’s plans – though it did allow for much-needed time on the training ground.
The Rovers boss pressed on regardless. Not content to sit back, he headed out on a scouting brief.
‘Not content’ is an apt way to describe Moore’s outlook on Rovers’ start to the season. He feels there is plenty more to come from his side, and is demanding his players deliver.
“Invariably I’ve been happy with the start of the month,” he told The Star.
“I’ve been happy with it because of the focus, the energy, the commitment that has been shown by everybody. It’s taken that for us to have shown that response.
“At the same time, even though I’m happy with the start, I’m not completely satisfied. There is still work to be done.
“We’ll continue to work.
“Am I sitting back completely satisfied thinking about what we’ve done and being happy with where we are? No.
“I know there is still a lot of hard work out there to be done and we endeavour to continue to work.
“That is the way we have to be at this football club.
“Myself, the staff, the players – we continue to work and we continue to ask the fans to be patient and get right behind us all the way.
“The weeks are going by but when you look we’ve not even completed two months at the club yet.
“It is very early days and what we are trying to do is find a consistency to our results and performances.”
In performance terms, Rovers have been largely strong.
Barring one of two costly slip-ups in defence, they have looked solid. Creativity and slickness in the middle of the park has been very good.
It is only in attack where there have been real question marks. The answer may well yet come from the transfer market but some solutions have definitely been suggested from young, dynamic players within.
Moore believes he has seen a bit of everything so far from his side and that the foundations are in place from which to build.
“We’ve come through some real tricky games,” he said.
“When I look back on the Gillingham game it was a tough start against an experienced manager, a team that is very strong, awkward and difficult to deal with.
“I thought the players acquitted themselves really well on the back of only two or three weeks working together.
“Then you go away to Rochdale, their first home game of the season, and they’re a well-rehearsed team that know their way around the league.
“Their style of play is to dominate the ball with a lot of possession and take away a lot of the opposition’s threat. I thought we had an equal amount of possession and an equal amount of chances.
“I thought it was as good away performance as any.
“We went to Grimsby in the cup to win it. With the amount of chances we had, the only thing lacking was a bit of cutting edge, putting the ball in the back of the net.
“I look at Fleetwood, with their strength in depth and a strong football team. Joey [Barton] has had them a couple of years and they will be there or there abouts come the end of the season.
“To get the three points was wonderful in the second home game of the season,” he added.
“The disappointment of missing out on the Bolton game had an adverse reaction on the players and the club so to reset for a bit of derby against Lincoln, I’ve got to be pleased again.
“It’s been a good start but there’s lots more to come.”