Doncaster Rovers: Small things aren’t the Main issue for Curtis any more

Curtis Main says he has had plenty to learn since arriving at Doncaster
Curtis Main says he has had plenty to learn since arriving at Doncaster

When a manager is forced to publicly back a player on numerous occasions, it is fair to say they may not have had the best of starts to life at the club.

Paul Dickov has found himself pushed into a position to defend Curtis Main several times over the last few months.

Paul Dickov

Paul Dickov

And it is fair to say the striker has not had the easiest of times since joining Rovers as part of the deal that took James Husband to Middlesbrough.

A knee injury which required surgery was followed by sporadic starts and a long spell without a goal as he struggled to find form.

But, increasingly so, Dickov’s faith in the forward is beginning to look justified.

Main has transformed into a powerhouse capable of leading the line alongside Nathan Tyson. And the goals have started to come as well with two in his last four games.

At 22, Main is still in the infancy of his career but he says his seven months in Doncaster has taught him some valuable lessons.

“You have to try hard and not get wrapped up or focus on the small amounts of time or detail,” Main told the Free Press.

“If you look at the bigger picture, there’s a lot of football, a lot going on and everyone plays their part in it.

“Being in and out of the side for different reasons is something you have to adapt to and deal with. A season is a long time.”

Not focusing on small details is something that Main has had to do in order to successfully emerge from his barren period in front of goal.

This was particularly useful when he missed a string of gilt-edged chances in a number of games a month ago which led to criticism of him intensifying.

He said: “As a striker, you usually get judged on goals or creating chances.

“If you don’t do that, people outside start to question you and I know I personally question myself – why am I not able to put that away?

“It’s important to not get caught up in one or two chances you don’t put away because there’s always the next game or two games down the line and a chance to put it right.

“It’s about staying positive. I know what I’m capable of and just because I miss a couple of chances doesn’t mean I can’t do anymore what I have been doing since I started to play football.

“That’s just part and parcel of the game. You have to deal with it and I think I’m getting better at that.”

Dickov believes Curtis Main’s biggest issue when it comes to goalscoring is trying too hard.

“Curtis is so desperate to do well that sometimes he tries too hard,” Dickov said. “We’ve spoken to him about it.

“His attitude is top class. He was unlucky because he hit the ground running at the start of the season and got injured. Within the time of him coming back the team started doing well.

“He’s a perfectionist. If things aren’t going right for him he tends to beat himself up about it.

“We’ve just told him to go and play, to relax and do what he’s good at.

“He’s a talented player and we’ve seen that, more so recently.