Why Darren Moore is expecting a whole different game when Doncaster Rovers clash with Southend United side they mauled 7-1 earlier this season
Darren Moore has warned Doncaster Rovers they will face a very different Southend United side tonight than the one they demolished 7-1 back in October.
Rovers showed incredible ruthlessness to sweep past the Shrimpers at Roots Hall, with the hosts finishing the game with nine men.
That night saw the confirmation of Sol Campbell as Southend boss, though he did not take charge of the game.
While he initially struggled to shake his new side out of their losing run which has left them facing an incredibly tough battle to remain in League One, Campbell has overseen an about turn since the start of December with only two defeats in their last eight matches plus their first league win under the former England international last time out against Accrington.
And Moore believes Campbell has succeeded in making his side harder to beat.
“They’ve tightened up at the back,” Moore said.
“They’re scoring goals but there’s more resilience to them. There’s more of a clear focus.
“They’re more organised and with more discipline to their game.
“Those are areas where you can see improvement to their game. It makes them a different team.
“And when you get the results too, you get that belief and confidence.
“It’s exactly where they’re at right now.”
Moore thinks Campbell will have addressed the 7-1 defeat in his preparations with his team for tonight’s clash at the Keepmoat.
But he says the landscape for both clubs has changed in the months since and a similarly comfortable win for Rovers should not be expected.
“It was a night where everything went right for us and everything went wrong that could have gone wrong for Southend,” he said.
“They’ll probably have a look at that but we’d like to think both teams have moved on from that.
“They’ve got a new manager at the helm with new ideas, fresh ideas, a fresh impetus of how they’re going to go.
“We’re professional up here and we know they’ll be a strong, well-organised team and a team that carries its own problems.
“If the fans are landing here expecting an easy, straight-forward three points then they’re sadly mistaken. It’s a game that if we are going to win, we’re going to have to earn it.
“If they are going to turn up they’ll be expected to get behind the home team and cheer us on, be loud and make the place vocal. They have been doing that.
“Fans can sometimes look at the league table but you can split hairs between the teams at the top and at the bottom. If you’re not looking at the league already and how close teams are bunched together, those are all the tell-tale signs.
“If you’re coming here and putting the shirt on, get right behind the team because your support is needed.”