Taking the sting out of it, Mark Cooper insists playing Bolton Wanderers is just another game for his promotion-chasing side.
After gaining a 0-0 draw at Nigel Clough’s Mansfield Town on Tuesday, Cooper was steadfast when it came to the prospect of playing Bolton at the innocent New Lawn on Saturday in front of the Sky Sports cameras (kick-off 12pm).
Bolton sit just two points behind Rovers in fifth and Cooper is keeping a measured approach ahead of the proverbial six-pointer.
He said: “We’re playing Bolton of League Two, not the Bolton of the Premiership – it’s just that next game, that’s all it is. They’ve had a brilliant run, they’ve got some good players, they’re a good team but so are we so it’s just another game for us.”
Cooper revealed he was pleased with his side’s approach at Mansfield following the defeat at Cambridge United on Saturday.
He added: “I’m satisfied with the effort and the commitment which is what I asked for which is what we didn’t get on Saturday, the only thing we didn’t do was put the ball in the net.
“Mansfield had a right go tonight, you’re not going to expect them to roll over and let us win the game.
“They beat Cheltenham here a couple of weeks ago so it’s a really tough place, they’re a good team, they’ve got some good players.”
Taylor Allen was handed his first league start of the season for Cooper’s men after returning from a loan spell at National League North side Leamington.
The 20-year-old’s impact caught the eye of Cooper.
“I thought he was outstanding, I thought he did great,” declared the Rovers manager.
“I think when you look at Taylor you’d think he was 28 but he’s still a baby and he’s got that knack of playing in any position he wants and that’s probably held him back – we need to nail him down a position and we’re still not sure which one it is but he didn’t do himself any harm tonight.”