'They have to create that bit of magic' - Frustrated Andy Butler bemoans lack of attacking quality in Doncaster Rovers' defeat to Charlton Athletic
Doncaster Rovers boss Andy Butler is imploring his players to take matches by the scruff of the neck after watching them slip to a six game without victory in the 1-0 defeat to Charlton Athletic.
A goal from Ian Maatsen after 12 minutes was enough to decide a tight game lacking in real quality and see the Addicks leapfrog Rovers in the League One standings.
Rovers produced some decent play in the opposition half but saw their efforts wane once they reached the final third, with attacking spark continuing to evade them.
“I think Charlton managed the game really well and that could have come down to the experience in the side,” Butler said.
“It shows, and we’re still a young side and we’re learning.
“But at the same time we’ve still got some good footballers in the side that I expect to take the game by the scruff of the neck and produce the bit of magic that we need.
“Charlton knew what they were doing and there was a professional performance from them in the second half.
“I just felt that we let them do that as well, we allowed them to slow the game down and it was wrong decisions from us.”
Butler was confident of an improvement from his side in the final third after good work on the training ground through the week.
And despite failing to see that come to fruition in competitive action, he continues to believe in his players’ ability to reignite their play-off aspirations.
“We did work this week on final third entries and it’s not quite panned out,” he said.
“I’ve still got to keep the belief in my players and hopefully they believe in what we’re trying to do.
“It has been a sticky spell, there is no hiding from that but at the same time we’ve got players in the final third who should be creating chances and should be hitting targets.
“We’ll sit down and address it and see where we can improve. There’s always improvements that can be had in any game.
“For the last few games we’ve just looked a bit flat in the final third and we need to find that clarity of thought in the players’ mindsets.
“We’ve given them pictures but they’re on the pitch and they have to create that bit of magic. If there is something on they have to take it and do it quickly.
“Everyone is disappointed and I’m really disappointed but I’m not going to give up on my squad because they’re a fantastic squad.
“It’s something we have to come out of the other side of.”
Butler was frustrated with the manner in which Charlton took the lead but also bemoaned the lack of creativity in his team.
"It's another game where we've lost by one goal," he said. "It was a mistake from us, a route one ball that we failed to deal with.
"Louis [Jones] has had two shots to save and their keeper has had one save so on both sides it's disappointing. We nullified them but at the same time we didn't produce anything in the final third.”