Bristol Rovers have it all to prove now, says Tom Parkes
Tom Parkes says he and his Bristol Rovers team-mates are desperate to impress new boss John Ward.
Defender Parkes admits the players have to take some responsibility for previous boss Mark McGhee losing his job.
Unveiled as the Pirates' fourth manager in two years earlier this week, Ward has just 24 games in which to save Rovers from relegation, starting with Saturday's home League Two clash against Rotherham at The Memorial Stadium.
He will first assess the squad he has inherited before deciding how active he needs to be when the transfer window re-opens in January.
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Given that they are currently languishing one place off the foot of the Football League, Parkes and his colleagues have some making up to do.
The former Leicester youngster admitted: "Everything changes when a new manager comes in.
"Most of the players here were signed by the last manager and the new gaffer will have his own ideas and plans.
"He did not sign any of us and it is up to us to prove we are worth a place in the team.
"January is just around the corner and it is fair to say the next few results will determine how busy the manager is in the transfer window.
"We want to impress him and show him that we are better than our league position suggests."
Of McGhee's departure, Parkes said: "It is always disappointing when you start the season with one manager and end it with another.
"That usually means you have under-achieved as a team and as individuals.
"None of us envisaged things turning out the way they have and we have to take responsibility for that.
"Mark McGhee is a really nice man and we feel sorry for him and for the fans. We know we have to do better."
Parkes believes last Saturday's 4-1 defeat at York will turn out to be the low-point of Rovers' season.
He said: "We cannot get any lower than that and, hopefully, Saturday's game against Rotherham will be a turning point in our season.
"We have to believe things can get better – that is the only way to think about it."
Parkes and his team-mates met Ward for the first time on Tuesday and the new manager stressed the importance of hard work.
"He talked to the lads and gave a speech in which he told us we had to work even harder," revealed Parkes.
"He is a nice man to talk to and we are all aware of his track record – but we have to do the business for him if we are to get out of this position."
Bridgwater joint-manager Kevin Milsom believes his side should be better supported.
Barely 100 spectators turned up to watch Bridgwater beat Winchester 3-0 in midweek.
It was their seventh successive victory and Milsom said: "The crowd was very disappointing considering the way we're playing at the moment.
"Our gates are normally very good, so it's puzzling why we're not getting more people to watch. Our support away from home is fantastic."
Former Yeovil defender Nick Flory is back in the hot seat at Chard after being given compassionate leave.
Flory had taken time off while his three-year-old son Isaac received treatment for leukaemia.
Now Issac is in remission, Flory has returned to Chard.