‘Doncaster are no mugs,’ says Jewell

IPSWICH Town manager Paul Jewell has warned expectant fans that rock-bottom Doncaster will be no pushovers at Portman Road today.

The statistics show just why the Blues are short-odds favourites to get back to winning ways following back-to-back defeats in the Championship.

Basement team Rovers have taken just one point from their last five, have won just once all season (that 1-0 win over Crystal Palace their only clean sheet) and with just 10 strikes to their name have scored the fewest goals out of anybody in the division. However, Jewell travelled up to the Keepmoat Stadium on Tuesday night to watch their 3-1 defeat to Middlesbrough and says that, despite another poor result, there were warning signs that Dean Saunders’ side could still be a major threat.

“For the first 35 minutes there was only one team in it,” said the Blues boss. “It was all Doncaster, they went 1-0 up with a wonderful goal and should have then made it 2-0.

“Middlesbrough scored with their first attack right on half-time – that tends to happen when you’re down at the bottom – and after that they took over.

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“Let’s not kid ourselves, although Doncaster are towards the bottom of the league they are certainly no mugs.

“They’ve got a bit more experience in the team now with (Pascal) Chimbonda, (El Hadji) Diouf, (Herita) Ilunga and (Neil) Sullivan. They play some good football and have got some good players.

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“I think you can see from the results this week – and throughout the season so far – there are no games you can call in this division.”

Meanwhile, Jewell refused to elaborate further on his interest in Rovers striker Billy Sharp – the man who earned the respect of the football world on Tuesday for scoring just three days after his two-day-old son sadly passed away.

“It’s been well-documented that we made a bid for him and (James) Coppinger in the summer,” said Jewell. “Billy Sharp is a player I admire, but there are plenty of players I admire throughout the division.”

– See today’s EADT and Evening Star for full match preview.

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