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Saunders pleased with Rovers

Dean Saunders was pleased with the performance of his patched-up Doncaster side despite Crewe going through to the JPT semi-finals.

Last Updated: 05/12/12 at 11:58

Saunders: Remains upbeat

Saunders: Remains upbeat

Chris Brown's last-gasp goal cancelled out Mathias Pogba's first-half strike to take 10-man Crewe to penalties.

But Robbie Blake smacked the crossbar with his penalty as the Alex, who had Matt Tootle sent off in injury-time for two yellow card offences, held their nerve and tucked away every spot-kick to win 5-3.

A virus had wiped out the Rovers squad, forcing boss Saunders to make five changes to the team that lost to Oldham in Saturday's FA Cup clash.

But the Welshman was delighted after his team took Crewe to the wire.

"We've had a virus running through the camp," he said. "We've had something like 16 missing or ill and we've only got 18, so work that out.

"I tried to get the game called off (on Monday) because we couldn't field a team but rules are rules and I've had to put players out there who weren't fit so that we didn't get fined as a club.

"I couldn't name the team until I got to the ground and we haven't trained or been through anything so I didn't expect us to win. But the players were magnificent and we showed desire to come back and played some great football.

"I'm sure some of the fans have gone home pretty excited about some of the young players we've got."

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C

lassic management. Build them up and then knock them back. Raise expectations and then dampen them. Create a dynamic where by you demand the most from your team, but where the team are given room to manoeuvre unexpected or unwanted results. Classy work by Van Gaal, he really reminds me a lot of me. A smart cookie, make no doubt.

hump3.
Van Gaal: 'I struggle for first three months'

H

e will be the England left back for ten years or more, and then you will have to thank MUFC for that. *smiles*

london saint
Shaw: Criticism spot on

P

urely because of that little diva moment he had last night, I don't want him coming to my club. DESTROYED ? Grow up and give something back to the club that helped put you up there on the world stage.

bale doubt
Saints' Schneiderlin stalemate

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