Dominic Samuel says he always had full confidence he would be playing Championship football with Rovers next season.

The striker admitted he took ‘a risk’ to leave Reading for Rovers, who were playing League One football for the first time in 37 years.

But his faith was rewarded as Rovers secured an automatic promotion spot and a swift return to the second tier.

Samuel linked up again with Tony Mowbray who he had previously worked with during a loan spell with Coventry City in 2015.

He has been pictured working hard during the off season on his strength and conditioning to prepare him for life in the Championship.

Samuel started life at Ewood Park, following his £500,000 switch from the Royals, with four goals in his first six games.

And while feeling he could have managed more than the eight goals he scored this term, he’s excited about what the future holds.

He said: “I would have liked to have had more goals, but it’s a team sport and the main thing was promotion.

“Taking a step down from Reading was a risk but knowing the players that we’ve got, and the manager, I was confident that we could get back up.

“The Championship is getting stronger every year so the main thing is to have a relaxing summer and push hard in the pre-season.”

The 24-year-old scored six times during his temporary spell with the Sky Blues shortly after Mowbray took charge at the Ricoh Arena.

And back working with the boss after a two year absence, Samuel says he has learned a lot once again.

“It’s been brilliant,” Samuel said of working with Mowbray.

“What he has done for me and the team has been different class.

“I’m full of praise for him.

“He gives you his experience of how to play and that has obviously paid off this year.”

Samuel praised Mowbray for bringing the whole club together, from the players on the pitch to those working behind the scenes.

And that’s why he believes the promotion is one to be shared by all at Ewood Park as Rovers look to get back to their former glories.

With the momentum behind them and a feel-good factor around the club, Samuel sees no reason why Rovers can’t have a successful season next term on their return to the second tier.

“From the background staff to the players we’ve had to stick together and work hard every day,” he added.

“We have done what the manager has asked and since we have been doing that we’ve been getting the rewards and that reward is promotion.

“We’ve worked hard for it from game one.

“Everyone has worked hard to get back there because this is at least a Championship club.

“Football doesn’t always work out like that but hopefully we can have another good season next year.”