Rovers Under-23s will need to show resilience on their return to Premier League 2 action at Brighton on Monday after being hit for six by Arsenal before the international break.

That ended their unbeaten start to the season and was a wake-up call for the squad, according to boss Billy Barr, whose side had impressed in victories over Leicester, Manchester City and Southampton.

But the young Gunners proved too strong, running out 6-0 winners, including five unanswered second half strikes, with Barr having felt his side wilted too easily.

Part of their learning is overcoming setbacks, and Barr says it’s down to the individual to ensure something like that doesn’t happen again.

Leadership is a quality Barr says must come within, as demonstrated by one high profile example/

“I read an article about Ruben Dias at Manchester City, and before he went in at Benfica as an 11-year-old, he was recruited not on his technical ability, but because of his leadership and communication,” Barr said.

“If you’re going to be a footballer, they have the technical ability, that’s why they’re with us, but do they have the other side of it as well.

“It takes a long time to build a reputation but a short time to lose it.

“The opposition isn’t just the competition, the competition is between each other as players.

“They as players can’t have performances like that if they are going to have a career.”

Barr was joined in the dug-out against Arsenal by Stewart Downing who recently re-joined the club.

Downing spent time working at Rovers’ Academy in the summer as part of his coaching badge process, and Barr hopes his influence will have had an effect on the youngsters.

He added: “Stewy’s come back to the football club and he’s also doing his coaching badges.

“It was an opportunity to fill our bench and also to get him in and around it.

“He’s been really good from a player’s perspective, to show exactly what’s needed.

“I let Stewart speak to them first after the game because the nuggets he has, speaking to players who want to be him, I hope they all listened and I hope they’ve gone away and think about his words.

“Maybe a different voice with the same message will have an impact on them.”