Workaholic Paul Dickov has fired a stark warning at his players: don’t take liberties in football.
In the aftermath of Friday’s 4-0 defeat at Middlesbrough, Dickov admitted his concern that Rovers’ lacklustre performance may have been a consequence of players taking their foot off the gas as a result of Tony Mowbray’s dismissal.
As a player the fiery Scot was characterised by his relentless work ethic. Now as a manager he wants his team to embody those same hard work values.
And he has warned his squad if they don’t meet his high standards, they won’t just risk their future at Rovers but also jeopardise their career in the game.
Dickov told his players not to leave anything on the pitch because “before you know it, your career has gone”.
Asked about the impact of Mowbray’s departure on his own team’s preparations last week, Dickov said: “We tried to keep it away from the players, but the players as a group always talk about things like that.
“I was in the changing room afterwards [and I said to the lads] ‘it looked as if you thought it was going to be easy because it was against a team who weren’t having the best of times and didn’t have a manager’.
“[I said] ‘it looked as if you’ve just got to go out there and turn up’.
“I just said to them ‘every single day you train and play you have to give it your all, because before you know it your career has gone’.
“I’ve been there myself as a player,” he added.
“If you don’t have that mentality there’s one way you’ll go and that’s down.”