Jon Dahl Tomasson described Rovers’ first defeat of the season at Reading as a ‘backwards step’.
Rovers were comprehensively beaten 3-0 by Reading, with Tom McIntyre, Junior Hoilett and Lucas Joao on target.
Tomasson felt his side made poor choices on and off the ball which proved to be their downfall on a night where they managed only a single shot on target.
That came early in the second half, with Tomasson having made a triple change at the break, with Ash Phillips denied by Joe Lumley before strong penalty appeals were waved away.
The defeat ended Rovers’ 100 per cent start to the season having taken nine points from their opening three matches, with Reading responding from their 4-0 defeat at the weekend in the best possible way.
"The players have been excellent, this wasn't a good performance, we have to give credit to Reading,” Tomasson explained.
“We didn’t play with our normal intensity, didn’t make the right choices on the ball or in the duels, so that was not positive.
“I hate losing, the players hate losing, our fans hate losing, and that’s all about football.
“It’s a disappointing, I feel sorry for the 1,000 fans who made the journey, have travelled so far but kept on supporting the team and the performance was not good.
“We need a reaction of course on Saturday.
“We will win games, we will lose games, we will draw games.
"We have made a lot of good steps forward, today was a step backwards."
Tomasson will now eye a similar reaction from his side to the one the Royals put in at the Select Car Leasing Stadium.
“We need to give all the credit to Reading,” he added .
“We were disappointed, it was a great reaction from them and we need to stick together and get a reaction on Saturday now.”
Rovers looked to have strong claims for a penalty when Phillips appeared to have been bundled to the floor in the box by Shane Long.
Asked for his take on the decision, Tomasson said: “I couldn’t see it.
“Those moments can change games but I didn’t see it, so I can’t say.
“It’s always about a couple of moments in games and whether you do the right things or not.
“The referees have a tough job, it’s not easy to be a referee so I will not complain about the referee because I know it’s difficult.”
Rovers won their opening three league games and progressed in the Carabao Cup, to maintain a 100 per cent start to the season.
Tomasson tasted defeat for the first time however as Rovers suffered a sixth defeat in their last seven trips to Berkshire, but the head coach was measured in his assessment.
He said: “You learn from winning games, you learn from losing games.
“We have made some great steps in the first couple of months and tonight wasn’t great, we need to learn from that and do better.
“It’s what I said from the beginning, we will win games and lose games, and tonight was not a good performance.
“We have made plenty of step forwards but tonight was a step back in our journey.”
Rovers have still only added three fresh faces to their squad, with two weeks of the window remaining amid a hectic schedule.
“If you compare to last season we only have three new players,” Tomasson said.
“I would like to get some bodies in and the club is working hard at that.
“Hopefully we’ll get those bodies in soon.”
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