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Fixture News

Cowley: Ruthless Display Required

Boss targeting positive outcome at Rotherham

15 October 2021

Danny Cowley
Photo: Jason Brown

Sunderland were sitting at the League One summit when Pompey thrashed them 4-0 before the international break.

Now Danny Cowley’s men will look to beat another of the division's favourites for promotion this weekend.

They head north to face a Rotherham outfit who are fifth in the standings after dropping out of the Championship last term.

And Cowley hopes that Black Cats display can help to inspire another positive showing at New York Stadium.

The Blues boss said: “We set a benchmark in terms of our performance against Sunderland – particularly in the top end of the pitch, where we were clinical.

“The boys have kept working hard and are in good spirits, so the onus is on us to look to build on that result.

“We’ll look to be just as ruthless at Rotherham. If we can do that, then it obviously gives us a very good opportunity.

“We’re under no illusion as to how tough the game will be – they have been at a higher level twice in the past three years and, as a consequence, have accumulated a Championship squad.

"The boys have kept working hard and are in good spirits, so the onus is on us to look to build on that result."

Danny Cowley

“In terms of the quality and depth they have, we know they have a lot of threats we’ll have to watch out for.

“We're aware how athletic they are and that they like to play really quick and direct, so there’s a lot to like in that team.

“For us to be able to go up there and secure a positive result, we’re going to have to perform at our very best.”

Pompey will come up against in-form striker Michael Smith, who never quite settled during his time at Fratton Park under Paul Cook.

Cowley said: “He’s someone who has performed on a consistent basis over a long period of time at Rotherham.

“Sometimes that’s the life of a number nine – for whatever reason it works at one club, but not at another.

“I’ve said before that it can be a heavy shirt to wear at Pompey and if you don’t hit the ground running, it can be difficult.

“But he’s been able to find a level of performance at Rotherham that attracted interest from a lot of Championship clubs.”


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