DESPITE scoring three goals in his last five games, Doncaster Rovers’ striker Billy Sharp admits that he’s still not firing on all cylinders.
But the 25 year-old, out for nearly two months after being stretchered off with damaged ankle ligaments in the first game of the season at Brighton, aims to be ready for the club’s trip to Oakwell on Saturday week.
“With it being the international break I’ve got a bit of time now to do a bit of extra work in training and to also rest my body,” he told The Star.
“When you come back after a long-term injury you often have other little niggles and it can be hard to shake them off. But I’m hoping to be 100 per cent fit for the Barnsley match.
“I think it’s a perfect game for us after the break. It’s a local derby and we’ll be going there having won our last away game at Ipswich on Saturday.
“It is always a good game there and hopefully we’ll take a quite a few fans and hopefully pick up another three points.
“We’ve got to build on the win at Ipswich and try and get some momentum because we are still bottom of the table.
“Hopefully we can put a bit of a run together and get out of the bottom three and climb a bit higher up the table.”
Rovers’ boss Dean Saunders is looking to Sharp’s partnership with new short-term signing El-Hadji Diouf to ease the club’s relegation fears.
Rovers have struggled to score goals for most of the season, but have scored four in the two games the two men have played together in attack - both bagging a brace.
“He’s Premiership quality as he showed on Saturday with two great goals,” said Sharp.
Diouf, who has joined the club on a three-month contract, has been booed by opposition fans in the two games he has played for Rovers as a result of his Premier League ‘bad boy’ reputation, but Sharp says that will not affect him.
“He’s actually a really nice lad,” he said.
“I like the stick which some opposition fans give me; it helps to get you going and I like to give them a bit back and El-Hadji is the same - he thrives on it.
“As I say he’s a really nice lad and a very good player. We played really well together on Saturday and we linked well on a few occasions.”
The target of a big money offer in the summer, Sharp has again being linked with a possible move to Portman Road in January.
The Ipswich fans made it clear on Saturday that they would love to see Sharp, who has scored three goals for Rovers in his two visits to Portman Road with the club. wearing a blue shirt.
Sharp admitted that he had been flattered by Town’s £2.3 bid but added: “It just wasn’t the right time.
“But Ipswich are a great club and would be a fantastic team to play for.
“But I’m a Doncaster Rovers player at the moment and, as I’ve said before, whoever I pull a shirt on for I’ll give my best.
“I’ve got this and another year at Doncaster and I’ll be giving 110 per cent until someone tells me otherwise.”
Sharp said he was more concerned at the number of goals that the team were conceding than his immediate future.
“We need to start keeping some clean sheets,” he said. “We won on Saturday but we aren’t going to score three goals away from home every week.”