Bristol Rovers fans' panel: We shot ourselves in the foot against Morecambe

Gazette Series: John Ward has been in charge at Bristol Rovers for one year John Ward has been in charge at Bristol Rovers for one year

ROVERS slumped to another defeat and remain deep in relegation trouble after a 2-1 loss at Morecambe on Saturday.

After taking the lead in the first half through John-Joe O’Toole, hopes were high that we would secure a precious three points to lift us up the table.

Unfortunately the Gas succeeded in shooting themselves in the foot as they spurned a host of good chances which would have put the result beyond doubt.

A 1-0 lead is always precarious and Morecambe gained the equaliser in the second half before scoring the winner through a set-piece.

We looked vulnerable at the back and the inability to clear crosses is costing us dearly. Losing Packwood was a blow, as the impressive central defender was recalled from his loan spell by Birmingham last week, and his absence proved costly.

With Northampton picking up a point on their travels and Torquay managing an unlikely win at home to Southend, Rovers are now just one point off the bottom two clubs.

The need to recruit extra players in January to get us out of this mess is obvious, as we are lacking experience at the back and the width needed in midfield to supply the front men. A natural goalscorer is also required unless any of the current strikers can show that they are up to the challenge.

The board will also have to make a decision about whether Ward is the right man to lead us over the rest of the campaign. Although he is well respected by the fans we are no further forward now than when he took over a year ago and results over the busy festive period will be crucial.

If we are cut adrift at the foot of the table a change may be needed but if we can secure a couple of victories our situation will look a little healthier.

It is vital to get back to winning ways against Portsmouth at the Memorial Stadium on Saturday, a club who like ourselves seem unable to reverse their decline and have much loftier ambitions than fighting a League Two relegation battle.

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