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We won't be Rover confident

PUBLISHED: 12:44 20 August 2008 | UPDATED: 13:20 24 August 2010

Matthew Connolly

Matthew Connolly

By Ben Kosky MATTHEW Connolly says QPR will not be taking newly-promoted Doncaster lightly as they attempt to recover from Saturday s mauling at Bramall Lane. Rovers, who are appearing at this level for the first time in more than 50 years, have already b

By Ben Kosky

MATTHEW Connolly says QPR will not be taking newly-promoted Doncaster lightly as they attempt to recover from Saturday's mauling at Bramall Lane.

Rovers, who are appearing at this level for the first time in more than 50 years, have already beaten Derby and were only two minutes away from recording their second straight win last weekend in a 1-1 draw against Cardiff.

"Doncaster are unbeaten and we won't underestimate them," Connolly told the Times. "I know John Spicer from when I was Arsenal, so it'll be good to play against him on Saturday.

"Everyone saw what Bristol City did last season, so we know what you can expect from a team that's just come up.

"From what I've heard Sean O'Driscoll's a good manager who likes to play attractive football. So it should be a good game, but the focus will be on our team and what we can do.

"We're at home, we're strong there and we'll be looking to bounce back from Sheffield United.

"Every game we play, we have to stay focused and do what the gaffer says."

Unfortunately, it looked as if Iain Dowie's instructions had fallen on deaf ears against the Blades as QPR conceded twice in the opening 13 minutes and never got going until it was too late.

Connolly, who retained his place at right-back ahead of Peter Ramage, was quick to take responsibility for the first goal, when Billy Sharp got away from him to head past Radek Cerny.

Of Saturday's back five, Connolly - who joined the Rs from Arsenal on January 2 this year - is actually the longest-serving player at the club.

But the 20-year-old refuted suggestions that the haste with which the Rs have assembled their team might be partly to blame for the apparent lack of understanding along the back line.

"I don't think that's an excuse, really - we're all experienced enough," said Connolly. "We just need to have more shape as a team.

"I made a big mistake for the first goal. I didn't watch the man, so tactics went out of the window, we never recovered from that, and it was a disappointing day.

"There are big expectations and we need to deliver, especially away from home because last season our away form wasn't good enough and that's the reason we were where we were."

Striker Patrick Agyemang, who missed the game in Sheffield with a groin strain, should be available against Doncaster, while Hogan Ephraim (shin splints) may also feature.

Skipper Martin Rowlands is set for his first appearance of the season after completing a three-match ban held over from the previous campaign.

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