I can understand frustration of the fans, says Bristol Rovers manager Mark McGhee
MARK McGhee "recognises and accepts" the feelings which led a group of Bristol Rovers fans to protest after the latest defeat in a disappointing season.
The manager left the field to angry chants following last Saturday's 1-0 home defeat by Dagenham & Redbridge, which put Rovers in the League Two relegation zone.
Around 50 supporters stayed on after the final whistle to direct more criticism in the direction of the boardroom.
But McGhee still has nothing but praise for the backing he and the team have received and has told his players they must show the character to take the inevitable stick that accompanies their lowly league position.
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"The crowd reaction was not a reflection on the performance against Dagenham, but an accumulation of frustration over a number of results and our position in the table," he said.
"I've told the players they have to be big and brave enough to accept that and go all out to prove they are better than our form suggests.
"I am certainly not dismissive of the way our fans are feeling. I recognise it and the need to work hard to turn things around.
"I know where we are short as a team and there have been certain things I have been trying to do to resolve that since the start of the season. We have suffered badly with injuries, a factor that cannot be dismissed.
"Confidence has suffered through not winning and now that we have one or two key players back we are still not firing on all cylinders.
"We have Cian Bolger coming back into contention, so that will be another one added, and Matt Lund is available again after suspension. Beyond that, the aim is to bring in some new faces going into the New Year.
"The supporters have been tremendous and I can have no complaints about the backing I have received from them or the board."
Rovers take on Coventry City this evening in the third round of the FA Youth Cup. The match is being played at Nuneaton Town's Liberty Way Stadium, kick-off 7pm.