It is rare to find a striker in a side who are 17th in the table to have scored 21 goals. Adam Armstrong has done just that, leaving you questioning just where Rovers would be without him.

The reason it is so infrequent is sides associated with those positions either lack someone of the quality to reach such figures, or they don’t create the chances required. Rovers don't lack either, yet no team in the bottom half has a striker which even 10 Championship goals.

You can now add his brace, including a last minute equaliser, at Cardiff City, to injury time winners against Rotherham United and Millwall, another late strike to down Luton Town, and you’re soon accumulating plenty of points owing to Armstrong’s goals.

The 20 goal mark has felt an inevitability since his blistering early season form, yet it’s still something to praise and acknowledge, only 20 players in Rovers colours have ever done that before. He’s joined serious company.

He has moved level with Danny Graham on 57 Rovers goals, and in 46 fewer games, yet he carries far less adulation with the supporter base.

Of course there are questions asked of his game, notably ‘he needs too many chances to score’ and ‘he takes too many shots’.

They have been justifiable criticisms at times, Armstrong has had 164 shots at goal this season, half the amount Bristol City have managed as a team, and 38 more than anyone else in the division.

He clocked up eight more here, and should have had Rovers ahead inside two minutes when failing to hit the target from a Harvey Elliott pull-back. And if he is going to make it at the top level he does need to be making more of the opportunities he gets, as they will become fewer the higher quality of opponent he faces.

Yet he’s by far and away Rovers’ best hope of a goal. They had gone more than seven-and-a-half hours without one from open play when he equalised in the final throws of the first half, linking up with Elliott once again, his left foot shot squirming between the arms of Alex Smithies.

Then, staring a 10th defeat in 15 matches in the face, he collected a Lewis Holtby pass, cut inside his marker, and sorted his feet out in time to slot beyond Smithies for a second time.

The 24-year-old has greater intelligence to his play than he gets credit for, and when Rovers needed a link between their midfield and forward line after a first half when their build-up play was too laboured, he provided it, showing a willingness to drop off and get the ball, excellent passes to Elliott and Sam Gallagher creating second half openings.

By the final whistle, it was a sense of just where would Rovers be without him as his 20th and 21st league goals of the season rescued a point that their second half display at the very least merited.

The worry for Rovers is his seemingly impending sale, with the goals he’s scored and the interest that brings, his contractual situation allied to the finances of the club, it appears all but inevitable that he moves on this summer, and for all the intention of that money being used to improve the team across all departments, Armstrong has provided the goals where so often they have failed. With Bradley Dack sidelined, Rovers’ efforts this summer must focus on finding more goals, otherwise they'll be left requiring more from those current within the squad.

Armstrong too has been part of a side that has underperformed and underwhelmed for too long this season, and Rovers from a sample size of a third of a season have one win and eight points, desperate stats for a squad of such talent, now left grateful for their promising start to the campaign.

The opening 20 minutes of the second half all but summed up their season, three times they were denied by the woodwork, Gallagher and Bradley Johnson denied by the post, before a Barry Douglas free kick rattled the bar, so near but yet so far.

Within seconds of that Douglas strike, they trailed 2-1, a poor Thomas Kaminski kick left them wide open as Harry Wilson fed Joe Ralls to finish. Rovers looked like they have so often, a side too easy to play against.

To their credit, they didn’t wilt, the bizarre sight of five substitutes being thrown on at the same time came before the late equaliser, as after he and Ben Brereton flashed shots wide of the post, Armstrong found the target, and the net, when it mattered most.

He did so at the end of the first half, one in which Rovers found little penetration or balance to a side that looked to have been picked to deal with the height of the Bluebirds side, not for the first time the XI selected coming at a detriment to their qualities in a bid to deal with the opposition.

Kieffer Moore gave Darragh Lenihan one of his hardest afternoons of the season, he and Harry Wilson both wasting good openings before a free kick was worked to Will Vaulks to hammer home the opening goal 27 minutes in.

The hosts were good value for that lead, Rovers grateful to Smithies’ blunder on the stroke of half time to see them in level.

Things clicked into gear much better in the second half, but their efforts would have gone unrewarded were it not for Armstrong’s late strike.

Rovers will now sit back and watch, with Rotherham United playing two of their four games in hand before they next take to the field. The gap to the bottom three is five places and 11 points, the Millers looking to cut that within the next week, and it seems almost incredible to typing such a thing given the expectations of this season.

But that’s the reality of a season that has tailed off to such an extent that Rovers need to avoid getting dragged into an unnecessary dogfight.

They would be in one much more were it not for Armstrong’s goals, a player whose progress within the last 18 months has made him one of the division’s leading marksmen.