Doncaster manager Darren Moore hailed the impact of Southampton loanee Josh Sims, who set up the winning goal in a hard-fought 1-0 victory at his parent club’s rivals Portsmouth.
Substitute Sims teased the home team down their left in the 79th minute, before laying the ball off for Reece James to turn and curl into the net from 14 yards out.
Moore said: “I thought all three substitutes made an impact for us when they came on.
“We were really pleased to have Josh in that position – he showed great composure. His first touch was really good and to pick the pass out to Reece in that position in the box; and it was a neat finish.”
But Moore – a former Pompey star himself – was also full of praise for his entire team’s performance, particularly when they were called on defensively.
He added: “I was really pleased with the way the boys showed resilience and to continue doing the ugly parts of the game – the headers, the blocks and getting first contact on the balls in the box. Because they did that side of it, they got their just rewards when the opportunity came.”
For his opposite number, Kenny Jackett, the biggest concern might be over an injury to starting centre-forward Ellis Harrison, one of only two recognised strikers at the club.
He said: “He has a slight injury, whether it is his hamstring or glute or whatever, it is not too bad. Hopefully, he is not out for too long. I don’t know whether he will be fit for Tuesday. The initial assessment is that we hope he is not too bad.
“Doncaster started well. After 20 minutes, we came back into the game and by half-time, we were well on top. That continued throughout the second half for the vast majority of it really without us really finding that cutting edge up front. There is a lot of things that we did today better than we did in other games, but similarly, we didn’t find that cutting edge and ultimately, with the one goal down the other end, it has cost us.”
James’ goal was a rare piece of quality in a game which would have done little to persuade League One fans they were missing out.
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