Tony Mowbray won’t burden his Rovers players with expectation despite them moving into the top six with a point on the road at Barnsley.

Rovers have lost just once in their opening eight Championship fixtures and picked up a second successive clean sheet in a stalemate at Barnsley on Saturday.

That was enough to move them into the top six, despite failing to score for the first time this season, with 13 points from their first eight matches.

Mowbray talked openly about his ambition and target to be in the top six last season, but there have been no open expectations on this campaign given the changes to the squad.

The manager says his side are displaying a spirit which can take them a long way, but admits there are several areas in which they need to improve.

“We fell down that hole last season talking about trying to get into the top six, let’s just play the next game,” Mowbray said.

“We have the second youngest squad in the league, after Barnsley, and like they did last year, we have a young, athletic team. Who knows where we can go?

“What I do now is that I see the flaws in them, the final pass, their game knowledge, they get a bit carried away at times, they’re not experienced footballers, so let’s just play each game and not burden them with expectation.

“Let’s just see how we go, try and win our home games, be competitive away from home and see where it takes us.”

Rovers are without a game in midweek, not back in action until the weekend visit of Cardiff City, by which time Sam Gallagher will be back after missing two matches with a thigh strain.

Mowbray is also hoping things ease on the injury front in recent weeks, with midfielder Bradley Johnson on the comeback trail from a hamstring injury.

Welcoming the free week, Mowbray said: “The team are stretched, they are straining really.

“The training is tough for them, and then to go and play with the demands on them against a young, athletic, fast team, to match that is a strain for them.

“We now have a week, not to rest, but to focus on the next opposition, Cardiff City, who will bring their own challenges.

“We have a week to prepare and see if we can get the right result.”