The second half of that statement could in fact be applied to last night's brave losing effort against the champions Manchester United, because even in an ultimately fruitless effort there was credit and there were dues to be handed out around the pitch and not just to those wearing the colour red.
It was like a flashback to our reverse fixture on New Years Eve. Our boys came with a very one dimensional but work heavy plan which was aimed at getting in the faces of our more expensively assembled counterparts, showing them minimal respect and taking what we could grab on the counter attack. It's been proven to have worked before and it was definitely the way to go again.
But this time it wasn't to be with fairly glorious failure our "reward" for the players efforts which for 75-80 minutes fully merited a point. The shape and 100% commitment to the cause was fantastic to see and moving forward there is precedent in this effort that should be taken onto the next games against West Brom and Liverpool.
But there are reasons outside of the uncontrollable which helped contribute to the Rovers downfall and it would be wrong not to address them. *Steve Kean abuse alert*
The decision from the "manager of the season" not to introduce any substitutes at any point during the 90 minutes to combat the fresh legs that Ferguson was able to provide was scandalous and bordering on ridiculous. There can only be one of three reasons why no-one new was bought on to help shattered legs and none of them cover anyone in any glory -
1) Kean didn't think it was the right thing to do.
2) The manager has no faith in some of the signings that were made.
3) The rumour that Kean has been given an appearance fee "cap" for each match which prevents him playing some players is true.
Take your pick but whatever your preference there isn't an excuse, or at least a good one anyway. I'd love for an explanation as to why the likes of David Dunn and Mauro Formica were just sat there like a bunch of slowly growing carrots whilst the clearly knackered Steve N'Zonzi and Marcus Olsson and the clearly abysmal Morten Gamst Pedersen were left out there on empty tanks.
Add into the mix that as a side we sat far too deep and it's fairly clear we DID contribute to our own downfall. *End Steve Kean abuse alert*
But the problems created on the night were outweighed by the display of passion and fight that will surely see us safe if it can be applied in more winnable upcoming games.
The likes of Bradley Orr, the Olssons, Scott Dann (a tenfold improvement on the Bolton game), the continually brilliant Grant Hanley and Yakubu put in a truly herculean work rate which did not get the result the effort warranted. Furthermore, the mere sight of a fired up Paul Robinson was a true sight to warm the cockles.
Seeing the looks on the faces of the Rovers players was a hard thing to digest as you could see the belief and the disappointment written all over each and every one of them. However, they all want it just as much as we do and that should be reasonable compensation on a deflating evening.
Yes, Rovers are back in the drop zone after a weekend where pretty much every result conspired against us, but this is far from over. There's still seven cup finals to go and the players have shown they've got the capability to survive, it could very well be the case that sometimes when you lose you can end up winning.