Rovers ready to unleash ‘main goal threat’ against Barnsley


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    Rovers are ready to unleash top scorer Adam Armstrong from the start for tomorrow’s trip to Barnsley.

    Armstrong has been used off the bench in Rovers’ two matches since the re-start having missed 10 days of training after recording a positive test for Covid-19.

    He has however, been Rovers’ liveliest attacker,scoring in the win over Bristol City and going close to setting up a goal for Dominic Samuel within moments of his arrival in the weekend defeat at Wigan Athletic.

    Armstrong has 13 goals this season, and has taken on the attacking mantle since Rovers lost Bradley Dack to a season-ending injury in December.

    He returns to one of his former loan clubs tomorrow in Barnsley, and is expected to be handed his first start since the resumption of the season after proving his fitness.

    “I think Adam is ready, I’m not stupid, Adam Armstrong is our main goal threat, let’s be honest,” Mowbray said.

    “So why hasn’t he been playing? Well, he missed  10 or 11 days, I can only judge on what I see in training and he hasn’t looked it in training, he hasn’t look as sharp, his touch has been off, he hasn’t looked as dynamic.

    “But the work he’s done over the last couple of weeks has got him up to speed and in my opinion now he’s up to speed.

    “He’s had a couple of half hours and he now has to get back to what we expect of him and I’m sure he will.”

    Two goals in the final 10 minutes condemned Rovers to defeat at Wigan, with Christian Walton at fault for the opener as he spilled a left wing cross at the feet of Lee Evans.

    The Rovers goalkeeper claimed he was fouled, but on closer inspection Mowbray said he collided with defender Tosin Adarabioyo, rather than fouled by a Wigan player.

    The manager felt miscommunication played a part in the goal which ultimately cost them a point, Wigan scoring a second goal on the counter-attack in stoppage time, but believed there were enough positive signs in defeat.

    He added: “It was a missed opportunity, no points from a game that we felt we should have been going there trying to win, which we did.

    “I don’t know the perception of the outside world, the score is the score and we have to take it on the chin.

    “I think there was enough positives to know that we are getting in to a position where we can dominate football matches now and feel as if we can control them.

    “Of course you have to score to win games. I can sit here and talk about the loss of main goalscoring threat in Dack, and while he’s not too far away from joining us, it’s a frustration that we can get in to the final third of the opposition more comfortably than we ever have done under my tenure, but not been able to take the opportunities to win football matches.

    “It was probably a miscommunication between the goalkeeper and central defender cost us the game, but that’s football, we have to move on because the next game comes very quickly.

    “The positives we took from the game was the level of control we had, particularly second half, and the frustration is we got no points from a game that we could have.

    “I felt there was enough confidence and belief that we can dominate teams and feel we can go and win football matches between now and the end of the season.”

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