Social media was a great way for the Rovers fans to see what the players got up to during the close season.

But while most were pictures and videos of exotic locations across the globe, things were a bit more workmanlike for Dominic Samuel.

The striker regularly posed updates of intensive, gruelling sessions in the gym having hired a personal trainer.

And that wasn’t just to ensure he was in good shape come the return of pre-season.

It was a conscious decision by the 24-year-old which he believes will benefit his game in the long run, and something he plans to continue throughout the 2018-19 campaign.

“Personally, in the off season I have been concentrating on getting my strength up,” Samuel told the Lancashire Telegraph after a tough two-hour morning fitness session at the club’s Austria training base.

“I’ve got my own fitness coach and am working more on my upper body and making sure I keep my pace up but my upper body strong.

“I’ve been doing that three days a week and I will continue to do it throughout the season.

“That was my aim throughout the off season, to get my strength up but to also keep my pace.”

Samuel scored five times in the opening month of last season following his summer move from Reading.

But just three more goals followed, two of which came in an FA Cup tie against Crewe, and he failed to find the back of the net in 2018.

He lost his place to Danny Graham and was used more in a wider role by Rovers boss Tony Mowbray in the second half of the campaign, rather than his more favoured central position.

So in a bid to improve, Samuel has opted to bring in a person trainer.

He added: “I’ve been thinking about it for a while, even towards the end of last season, if I can get my strength up a bit more then during the games, I wouldn’t say find it easier, but I would be more capable to hold off the defenders.

“I think it will add more to my game.”

Rovers will add to their forward line in the close season, with Samuel one of three strikers currently on the club’s books.

But he wants any prospective signing to know they face a battle for a starting shirt come August.

On his decision to work on the physical aspects of his game, the frontman added: “Football is your life, you dedicate your life to it and in the off season you should still work hard and dedicate your life to it. That’s what I was doing.

“In the early stages of pre-season you won’t be doing weights, so I was trying to keep the balance, because I knew in the early stages there wouldn’t be many weights but plenty of running.

“It’s putting everything together and trying to make you a complete player by having the pace, the strength and the skill as well.

“I feel like once you get that in your system then it will help you grow into games.”