Bristol Rovers fans' panel: Reaction to 1-0 defeat at Dagenham and Redbridge in League Two
ROVERS’ form continues to frustrate and disappoint after a fourth consecutive away defeat in the league on Saturday.
After losing 1-0 to Plymouth the previous week, we were optimistic that the Pirates would bounce back and return victorious from lowly Dagenham & Redbridge.
After all, a good number of the injured players are now available again and the team had a full week to recharge their batteries and prepare for the fixture after a hectic schedule.
But another poor performance saw the Daggers emerge with all three points and left fans wondering if this season will end up being a carbon copy of the last two disappointing campaigns.
Only our home form – with two wins and a draw – has enabled us to notch seven points from seven games, which is still a distinctly below average return.
We missed the presence of the injured Brunt up front on Saturday and do not look as strong a team without him firing on all cylinders.
I was surprised to see Lockyer and Clarkson left out of the line-up as they have impressed this season, while Ward still stubbornly resists putting the experienced Gill in the team following his injury lay-off.
New loan signing Andy Bond made his debut but whether he can perform the role we need on the right side of midfield remains to be seen.
The wide positions have been problem areas all season as Ward has not adequately replaced Broghammer, who suffered a season-long injury in the summer, leaving the strikers starved of service.
As a result we have scored just five league goals so far this season, and unless that problem is addressed it could be a long hard winter.
The decision to play Ellis Harrison also backfired on Ward as he substituted the winger at half-time. Unless he can focus on his football and not be distracted by off-field issues we could be left with another wide-midfield headache.
Although defensively we have looked solid, we are conceding goals from set-pieces of late and it could be time to give the fit-again Kenneth a chance to shore up these weaknesses.
A big improvement is needed at the Memorial Stadium on Saturday against fellow strugglers Hartlepool to help restore the faith.
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