Bristol Rovers goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall pleasantly surprised at speed of turnaround
Steve Mildenhall admits that the speed with which Bristol Rovers have managed to turn around their fortunes has pleasantly surprised him.
On-loan goalkeeper Mildenhall, who arrived from Millwall as one of six new faces brought in by manager John Ward during January, has been part of a side that has boosted their chances of survival on the back of a five-match unbeaten run.
A run of just one defeat in eight games since Ward was appointed on December 17 has seen the side move from the foot of League Two to five points clear of the relegation zone and Mildenhall said: "Every time you are a player going into a new football club that is struggling you hope that things will change quickly.
"It has surprised me a little bit that we have managed to get on a run as quickly as we have. A lot of what we have achieved so far is really down to the basics of hard work more than anything else.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
"That is the first thing the manager demands of us as players and I think the lads have all bought into his philosophy.
"We all know our jobs and are well versed and drilled in what the manager expects from each and every one of us every time we go out on the pitch.
"It has helped that all the new players have pretty much hit the ground running and I think the players that were already here before the January transfer window deserve credit for the way they have welcomed us into the group."
Mildenhall, meanwhile, believes that Ward will not allow the threat of complacency to creep in and derail the momentum Rovers have built up in recent weeks.
"I don't think we will be allowed to forget the things we have done to get on this little run," said Mildenhall. "The coaching staff gather us together after every training session for a group discussion where the emphasis is always on remembering why things are going our way.
"It almost sounds too simplistic to say that it is work-rate, effort, discipline and shape that are possibly the most important things you need to get results.
"You would think that these basic ingredients are a given every time you step out on the pitch, but I've seen during my time in the game that sometimes these things are the things that are the easiest to forget.
"Players sometimes need a bit of direction and a reminder and that is what we are getting here every day we come in to training.
"That we are getting results at the moment shows that it is working for us and it is important that we as a group do not let each other forget that. If you have even one weak link out on the pitch the whole thing can fall down very quickly.
"There is a long way to go still. Yes, we are on a great run, but it wouldn't count for very much if we were to lose the next eight games. As much as you go unbeaten in five games, it is just as easy to go five games without picking up a point if you don't show the right application.
"We'll keep level-headed and approach what we have to do with the same sort of work-ethic we have shown in recent games and then, hopefully, what has happened over the last few weeks will continue.
"We can't guarantee that we will win every game, but what we can guarantee is that we will give everything to try and make it happen."