Darren Ferguson was delighted to see his Doncaster side grind out a win from what he labelled their "worst performance of the season" against Colchester.

Darren Ferguson hails under-par Doncaster's battling qualities

Darren Ferguson hails under-par Doncaster's battling qualities

Tommy Rowe's goal in first-half stoppage-time was enough to hand Rovers their third consecutive league win, despite being troubled by the struggling U's.

And Ferguson said it will be far easier to analyse his side's struggles next week with another three points on the board.

"It was by far our worst performance of the season but that is something we can address and go through thoroughly on Monday," Ferguson said.

"What I said to the players is that when a game is like that, you have to make sure you win it.

"It makes a much better weekend and Monday morning. When you play a game where you are nowhere near the standards you set at times and you lose, it can be a long weekend.

"We managed to win it, get a clean sheet and it keeps the momentum going.

"It's 26 points from 13 games, which is fantastic."

Ferguson conceded that Colchester deserved something from the game having caused problems with strong pressing.

He said: "Colchester will feel hard done by, I'm sure. We were fortunate to win, absolutely. It was a flat performance.

"Were we due one of those? I don't know. Did we expect it? No.

"You have to give the opposition credit, they were better than us on the day."

Colchester boss John McGreal was left to bemoan missed chances as his side failed to make their pressure count.

He said: "The boys are feeling sore, especially those that have missed the chances.

"They've got good strength of character. You look at the performance and it was an outstanding team performance, without the result.

"I thought to a man, even the subs coming on and the changes we made, they were all excellent."

McGreal was proud of the performance and feels Colchester are close to turning around their form, having failed to win in their last six league matches.

"The game plan worked to a tee," he added. "Doncaster have been flying high. They have been buoyant at home, winning games and people have said we'd be the underdogs coming here.

"There was not a chance of that happening. We were by far the better team. We've done a real number on them.

"It does hurt though having been beaten.

"We've put in a lot of work to that game and come away with nothing. But we'll address it and move on."