Paul Dickov column: Sheffield United derby clash can be ideal tonic for Doncaster Rovers

I've both played with and been managed by Nigel Clough
I've both played with and been managed by Nigel Clough

We’ve put last week’s disappointing postponement in the FA Cup behind us and prepared really well for the big derby game this weekend.

What happened down at Weston-Super-Mare was frustrating for everybody – myself, the players and especially the fans. Everyone was up for the game and I know the players were desperate to continue the good run of form we’d put together.

But we can’t change what happened, we’re back down there on Tuesday night and we’ve got to look forward to Saturday. Only after then can we think about the FA Cup game.

It does mean that we’ve got a busy period coming up but we’ll embrace that as we do every game we play. Sometimes these hectic schedules are not a bad thing if you’re getting the results which is what we need to do. If we can build something in that time it can really kick us on.

The last two performances have been good and there’s a real determination to get some consistent results flowing.

It also gives a chance for those players who haven’t had a lot of games recently. They will definitely get the chance to get up to speed quickly.

You’d like to keep the same team in every game but with 11 games in six weeks, that will be virtually impossible.

In many ways, this weekend’s game is ideal to focus minds and get over the frustration of last weekend. The lads cannot fail to be up for this one against a very good Sheffield United team and in front of a big crowd at the Keepmoat. We know it’s going to be a tough game but it’s one we’re really looking forward to. I know Nigel Clough really well.

They’ve had some trouble scoring goals recently but their performances have been good. We know we’re going to have to be defensively sound if we’re going to win the game.

They’re good a keeping possession so we’re going to have to be patient at times. I always tell the players you can’t win the game in the first 15 minutes.

There’s no way we’re going to sit back at home and let them have the ball. It’s about us taking the game to them. We’re at our best on the front foot.

I feel that we’ve got the players that will thrive in the atmosphere. We’ve got experienced lads so we’ll have no problems dealing with that.

We’re all looking forward to this one.