December 31, 2017
Rovers 2 Rochdale 0
Doncaster Rovers made it three wins in a row as they finished 2017 in tenth place in the League One table. That was thanks to two first half goals, which effectively put the match out of Rochdale's reach, although the visitors did offer more in the second half, with the half time team talk producing an improved performance. As such, Rovers were put on the back foot more after the break, but a recently found defensive resilience is paying off.
Rovers made just one change, with Rodney Kongolo dropping out of the squad and Jordan Houghton taking his place in the starting line-up. Rovers struck in the fourth minute as they surged forward and a fine left-footed shot from Ben Whiteman was directed well out of the reach of the Rochdale goalkeeper.
That became 2-0 in the 27th minute as Ben May ended his personal goal drought, a good finish even if his shot did take a slight deflection. It then became only a matter of time before the third goal arrived - but it didn't, and Rochdale's tactical changes at the break dulled the Rovers' cutting edge. But, as Darren Ferguson has said on numerous occasions in the last couple of weeks, at this time of year, the results count more than the performance, and a win it was.
December 31, 2017
Ferguson pleased with win
Boss Darren Ferguson was very pleased to have picked up another three points from Friday evening's win over Rochdale and went out of his way to praise the performance on a pitch that was passed fit to play despite the snowfall from earlier in the day.
Speaking after the game, he said: "It was a good win. We did what we had to do. It's another clean sheet so I'm delighted with that. It's three on the bounce. It was just about getting the win. It wasn't very pretty. It was a hard pitch to play on, it was hard in areas, especially the middle of the pitch. But we did what we had to do and ground out another really good win. I'm really delighted with the players and the week we've had couldn't have gone any better really."
"Three clean sheets, three wins and I don't think there will be many teams that get three wins out of three in this period, so I can't be any happier with the effort and the commitment the players have shown."
He even was satisfied with the performance in the second half, even though they were less of an attacking threat than in the opening 45 minutes, adding: "There was no disappointment in my players. The change helped, getting Matty Blair on because they nullified [James] Coppinger a little bit. We went with a bit more width and I felt he managed to get us up the pitch. Matty did well and he's definitely in my thinking for Monday. I'll go and watch Peterborough (on Saturday) and see what I get out of that."
December 31, 2017
Match highlights

Highlights from Friday night's match against Rochdale are available on the Sky Sports web site.
To view them, please click on the logo to the left.

December 31, 2017
Redfearn returns to Donny
Former Doncaster Rovers player Neil Redfearn, who has also managed at Rotherham United and Leeds United, has been named as the new manager of Doncaster Rovers Belles.
Redfearn’s first game in charge will be away to the division’s bottom club, Watford, on 7 January. He succeeds Emma Coates, who left the club to join the England set-up in October, with interim coach Kate Rowson being in charge since then - and they are currently top of the WSL 2 with four wins from six games.
After being appointed, Redfearn said: "The women’s game is on a steep upward curve and it is our aim to have Doncaster Belles competing at the highest level against the elite football athletes of WSL1. I have been hugely impressed by the players’ buy-in over the last six weeks towards my training methods and beliefs of how the game should be played and hopefully we can keep improving and be successful collectively and individually going forward."
Faye Lygo, the Doncaster chairwoman, added: "His experience within the game is invaluable and will bring a new dynamic to the team, but most importantly for us he shares our values and visions, particularly surrounding development."
December 29, 2017
Rovers v Rochdale
Doncaster Rovers face Rochdale at the Keepmoat Stadium this evening with the two teams also lining up against each other a week tomorrow for the FA Cup Third Round tie, so both will be keen to gain the upper hand this evening as a marker for the rematch.
Rovers will go in to the game full of confidence after winning the last two games, and another tonight will put Rovers into the top half of the table. Darren Ferguson indicated before the Christmas matches that he intended to fully use his available squad, and that is likely to continue against Rochdale. We are not aware of any new injury concerns for Ferguson, although the usual quintet of players is still unavailable as they recover from long-term injuries. Midfielder Matty Blair came through his first match after recovering from a calf injury on Tuesday with no reaction, and should play some part this evening.
A combination of illness or injury affected Rochdale boss Keith Hill's selection for their Boxing Day game, and he will have to make a late check to see those affected - Jim McNulty, Calvin Andrew and Joe Rafferty - will be available today.
Rochdale go into the game sitting in 23rd place in the League One table and have not won for their last four games.
December 29, 2017
Ferguson after another win
Darren Ferguson is hoping to make it three wins in a row this evening as his Rovers side entertain Rochdale at the Keepmoat Stadium.
Ferguson is well aware of the potential problems that Rochdale may pose, commenting on DROS: "It will be a hard game on Friday night, but I have to keep going back to it, it’s all about getting the three points if we can and there will be no excuses from my players. I like Rochdale as a team, I think the manager has done a good job with them and what I like about them is they play with a very high energy. They have a lot of young players in the team, they have flexibility in the formations that they like to play and they always give us a hard game."
As he has said before in the last few days, the result is paramount. He added: "It is a simple case of getting a result and going again and getting another result and going again. It can turn quickly either way, but I have remained confident we can get the results we need. It sets you up for the second part of the season if you come through it."
December 29, 2017
Tonight's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this evening's home game against Rochdale are:
Referee: Ross Joyce
Assistant referees: Matthew Jones and Alix Pashley
Fourth official: Peter Wright
December 29, 2017
Cut price tickets tonight
With the same opposition for two successive home games, Rovers have decided to reduce the price of tickets for this evening's game.
They have decided to charge £10 for adults, £5 for concessions and £1 for those aged 17 and under.
The two clubs have also agreed that ticket prices for the FA Cup game on Saturday, 6th January will be:
Adults £15 - Concessions £10 - Juniors (17 & under) £5
December 28, 2017
Parkin signs for more at York
Ex-Rovers loan striker Jon Parkin has signed an extension to his York City contract, meaning he will be staying at the club until the summer of 2019.
The striker, who will be 36 later this week, has already scored 16 goals this season, and the club are understandably pleased to be keeping their man, with ex-Rovers boss Dave Penney, now Director of Football at York, admitting that he could still be playing at a higher level.
Boss Martin Gray said: "We are delighted that Jon has committed his future to the club for another 18 months. There is so much we are looking to build on going forward and Jon is a key part of what we want to do. He is a big personality, a big character and such an important player. Wherever he has been in his career, he has scored goals and
December 28, 2017
Toffolo open to return
On-loan defender Harry Toffolo has returned to parent club Norwich City after injury curtailed his time at Doncaster Rovers.
He has spoken of his frustration and disappointment in an interview on DROS, which states that he would be happy to resume his loan at Rovers once he is fit again. However, he is unlikely to be fit much before the end of the next transfer window, which gives doubt to such a move.
Harry told DROS last week: "I’m gutted, I had a good run in the side and it is really frustrating - but if I had not made the block then we could well have conceded. If the ball is there to be win I have to put my foot in, it’s just disappointing to miss such a busy period."
He added: "I have really enjoyed my time here and learnt a lot from all the staff, so I’d be happy to stay here. Progression is the important thing for me at this stage in my career. Obviously with the injury now it is down to the two clubs to come to an agreement that suits everyone."
December 28, 2017
Johnstone in demand
Ex-Rovers loan goalkeeper Sam Johnstone has had a successful half-season on loan at Aston Villa, with Villa boss Steve Bruce keen to keep his many past the January transfer window, possibly on a permanent move either in January or in the summer.
However, the Daily Express is reporting that three Premier League clubs are also hoping to sign him, which could open a bidding war in January.
Bruce has already spoken of his hopes of signing Johnstone, saying he "will do everything in our power" to sign him, and adding: "He is going to find it difficult at United to break through because of what they have got so we are hopeful."
It has been reported that Crystal Palace, West Bromwich Albion and West Ham United are closely monitoring the situation.
December 28, 2017
Rovers get new fitness coach
Darren Ferguson has revealed that Doncaster Rovers have a new fitness coach after he confirmed that Ben Rome has left the club.
Ferguson explained to the Doncaster Free Press: "We spoke at length. I had a look throughout the season about various things and I felt it was a decision we needed to make."
Rovers have appointed Rob Lee, formerly of Cardiff City, as a replacement.
December 27, 2017
Rovers 3 Northampton Town 0
It turned into a relatively comfortable victory for Doncaster Rovers in the Boxing Day encounter against Northampton Town yesterday, with a relatively toothless Northampton not really providing much of a threat to Ian Lawlor's goal - although it threatened to be otherwise with long range pot shot flying well over the bar in the first minute. But after that, they did not really threaten much, and Rovers went on to dominate the possession throughout the game.
As promised, or hinted, Darren Ferguson continued to change his starting line-up, with three changes this time around and certainly for this match, those he sent out to do battle were more than up to the task.
Rovers went in front in the 33rd minute when the recalled James Coppinger got on the score sheet, making sure from close range. Tommy Rowe had squared the ball to Marquis, whose shot was blocked - then Alfie May hit the rebound on to the post, with Coppinger providing the needy nudge over the line.
The second game from the penalty spot as Rowe drew the foul, and Niall Mason converted the spot kick after persuading James Coppinger that he should take it. Fortunately for Mason, his penalty was good enough, even though the keeper dived the right way.
A third goal should make it beyond reach for the visitors, but Rovers had to wait until the 66th minute, which bore similarities to the first goal. From a corner, Mathieu Baudry saw his header cleared off the line, but Andy Butler was on hand barely a yard out to put the ball over the line.
And it could have been better for Rovers, but I guess we shouldn't be greedy.
But the highlight of the game in the 51st minute when James Coppinger performed an outrageous back-heel to put Alfie May away down the Rovers right. Sadly the move came to nothing, but if it had, it would have been included on numerous match highlights.
December 27, 2017
What the managers said
Darren Ferguson was delighted to see his Rovers side register a comfortable win over Northampton Town on Boxing Day, saying after the game: "If you can imagine a game going as well as it possibly could have then that was one of those. We were very comfortable, got a clean sheet, got three goals and could have had more. I thought we managed the game very well. “I’m very pleased with the players. At this stage of the season it is all about picking up points. I’m not too bothered about how good the performances are at this period of the year, it’s just about getting the results."
"My players were very professional today. I thought we did what we had to do in the second half. The third goal when a game is at 2-0 is so important. We had an opportunity to really kill the game off and that is what happened. I'm really disappointed we didn't get a fourth because I thought we had opportunities to. I'm delighted with the players and the result. It's a really good day's work."
Northampton boss Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink suspected that he got his team selection wrong for the game after being very disappointed at the performance of his players.
Speaking to the Northampton Chronicle after the game, he said: "I'm very disappointed, we were flat and they deserved to win. In the last two matches we played really well and you want to keep that going and try to get a little bit of momentum. We had a good chance to score when it was 1-0 but then straightaway they go up the pitch and score a second goal and that summed us up today. It's a little bit frustrating because we're up and down. We want to sustain our form and at this moment I can't put my finger on why we were so flat today. The intensity was so high in the last two matches, we had played really well and all of that kind of stuff but today we didn't look how I see them and I know how they can play and how I want them to play."
He added: "We changed a few things and maybe I got the selection wrong for this match, it's a possibility, but there was no oomph and you need oomph and character, especially when you go away and when you're in the position we are. We tried to inject that into them at half-time and we started a bit better but you still need intensity and we didn't show enough of that."
December 27, 2017
Match highlights

Highlights of yesterday's match are now available on the Sky Sports web site.
To view them, please click on their logo to the left.

December 27, 2017
Voting results v Bristol Rovers
We received nominations for just three different players to be the "Man of the Match" for Saturday's away game at Bristol Rovers.
Ian Lawlor comfortably won the vote with 54.54% of the votes, with Alfie May and Niall Mason also being nominated.
The voting for the Boxing Day match is now open and remains open until Friday, 29th December.
December 26, 2017
Rovers v Northampton Town
Darren Ferguson indicated several days ago that he was approaching the next few matches in the full knowledge that he would have to use all of his fit players to ensure that some players did not play more than he thought wise.
That was shown with James Coppinger not playing at Bristol Rovers on Saturday, but the not too subtle hints are that the talismanic midfielder will return to the first eleven this afternoon.
Matty Blair has not played the last few matches due to a calf injury, but the hints are that he could be included as a substitute for today's game, suggesting that he is not fully fit but could still have a part to play.
Ferguson says he has 18 fit players to select from over the next week, but he will still be without the longer term injured players Ross Etheridge, Luke McCullough, Alex Kiwomya, Danny Andrew and Andy Williams.
Northampton Town boss Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink also has to check on his injured players before naming his squad for today's game. Defender Aaron Pierre limped off in their game against Blackburn on Saturday, but that may be balanced, of sorts, by the successful return of striker Sam Hoskins as a second half substitute.
Midfielder Matt Crooks serves the second of a two match ban after being sent off for the second time this season against Walsall. Daniel Powell is unlikely to play today as he continues his recovery from a hamstring injury.
The match kicks off at 3pm, but remember that there are no buses running today.
December 26, 2017
The managers' preview
Darren Ferguson has explained that he is having to "mix the squad up" over the festive period as he juggles a limited number of players he has available.
Looking forward to today's game, he said: "I was keen on keeping the squad fresh, Baudry returned and May dropped to the bench, Coppinger was fit but I chose to rest him, Whiteman and Matty Blair will both be fresh for the game as well. You have to mix the squad up as best as you can over the festive period because I only have 18 fit senior players at the moment, so I have had no choice really. Northampton are a solid team and play a 4-4-2 formation with a big striker up top and another with a lot of pace, it looks like Crooks will be suspended for the game and were fresh going into it."
He added: "It is nice to be at home on Boxing Day; I think everyone does because you get a good crowd. The crowd average has been very good at home. I am also happy about the game against Rochdale (on December 29) being a Friday night game as well as it generates a different atmosphere."
"Anyone that shows a level of consistency over the Christmas period will pick up places and we are one of those team with nine or 10 others that want to do that and you could get yourself a bit of daylight between yourself and the relegation zone. It’s important that we win against Northampton to get that first back-to-back wins - we certainly feel that these upcoming games are winnable and the players have shown fantastic attitude."
Northampton boss Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink brings a side who are floundering in the relegation zone to the Keepmoat Stadium with the hope of taking at least a point out of the game in the hope that it will improve their plight. He told their official web site: "We want to go there and try and get something. Doncaster play a different system to the one we faced with Blackburn on Saturday so we might have to play a little bit differently. They are very fluent in the way they play and we have to try and stop them. The last two games have been encouraging and we want to keep this little run going. It won’t be easy but we are going to try everything in our power to come back with the three points."
December 26, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this afternoon's home game against Northampton Town are:
Referee: Ben Toner
Assistant referees: David Benton and Paul Thompson
Fourth official: Stephen Wade
December 25, 2017
Bristol Rovers 0 Rovers 1
For a change, Doncaster Rovers did not concede in the closing minutes of each half or the early stages of the second half, and managed to come away with all three points from the Memorial Stadium.
The only goal of the game came just after half an hour's play when Tommy Rowe was brought down in the penalty area, with Niall Mason converting the spot kick to give Rovers the lead.
Darren Ferguson said in advance of the game that the Bristol pitch wasn't the best, and that certainly proved to be the case with the surface cutting up badly.
The home side pressed forwards in the second half and were unlucky not to level things in the 86th minute, with the ball going out of play by the goal line before they thought they had scored. But the most important thing is that Rovers (Doncaster, that is) held on successfully this time and came away from a busy Christmas set of matches with all three points. In fact, if they had lost, Rovers would have been level on points with fourth from bottom in the table.
Although apparently fit to play, James Coppinger did not travel, with Ferguson preferring to delay his captain's return until Boxing Day. Matty Blair was also not fit enough to be included, although he may appear on the bench for the next match.
December 25, 2017
What the managers said
Rovers boss Darren Ferguson was very pleased to come away with all three points from Saturday's game at Bristol Rovers, with him confessing that the result was important ahead of a busy period for the players.
Speaking after the game, he said: "It was a result we needed. It was a very important game. Looking at the league table before the match, we knew we could move up a right few positions and that’s what we’ve done. It’s a tough place to come, the pitch is horrible, the atmosphere can be real intimidating here because the fans are very good."
"The first half I felt we controlled most of it. The shape worked really well. Second half became more difficult but against the wind and we couldn’t get out. We dug in and ground out a result."
He added: "When you come to place like this where they've got a very good home record, that's what you need to do. I was pleased first half we did most of the things I wanted them to do. And second half they got on top and we had to dig in. I thought we could have killed them off when we had one or two breaks. But we did what we needed to do, got a break or two which we were definitely due. It's a very, very good win for us."
Bristol Rovers assistant manager Marcus Stewart admitted that the penalty award in the first half was the right decision, commenting: "Their penalty was a penalty, there is no doubt about that. I think after that penalty, I don’t remember them having a shot on target. We huffed and we puffed but it wasn’t a day for things to go for us."
"The first half was all about winning your headers and tackles, the pitch is crumbly that’s for sure and the wind was against us. So to dig in and come in 0-0 at half time would have been great. But it was a scrappy game and no one really gained a foothold. I just think we found it a bit difficult against the wind, but second half we had a right go and put them under a lot of pressure. Fair play to them for defending well. We had our opportunities to score, but there were no real clear cut chances I would say."
The Gas thought they had equalised late on in the game, with the linesman deeming that the ball had gone out of play before their 'goal' was scored.
Stewart added: "Whether the ball was in or out for our goal at the end was debatable, I can’t tell by looking at the screen. The man with the best view was the linesman, so we’ve got to trust his decision."
However, Bristol defender Lee Brown had other ideas, saying: "Ellis [Harrison] said there is no way it crossed the line. Everyone that was around the ball said it didn’t cross the line. But when you’re on a bad run that’s what happens. I don’t see how he [the linesman] can see that through 10 players, through two posts, the ball has gone across the face of the goal. So if it’s behind the line it must be some ball to get it across the goal, unless he’s done it off the outside of his boot – if you think about the logistics of it. So, he’s obviously guessed and it’s gone against us."
December 25, 2017
Match highlights

Some match highlights of Saturday's away game at Bristol Rovers are now available on the Sky Sports web site.
To view them, please click on the logo to the left.

December 25, 2017
No buses tomorrow
Please not that First buses will not be running any services in Doncaster tomorrow. Any supporters wanting to attend the home game against Northampton Town will therefore have to make other arrangements to get there.
It also means that the usual buses running to and from the Keepmoat Stadium both before and after the match will not be running.
December 23, 2017
Bristol Rovers v Rovers
Darren Ferguson should be able to call upon the services of James Coppinger and Craig Alcock for this afternoon's long trip to Bristol Rovers after both missed out last week due to injury. With nine missing from last week's game, it's a boost for Ferguson, who has to try and work out a way of using his available players wisely to play a busy schedule of matches in the next nine days.
Matty Blair, who has a calf injury, is rated as 50/50 and we would expect that he will be given extra time to recover, with Boxing Day a more likely option.
Harry Toffolo is unavailable after returning to Norwich City due to having broken a bone in his foot, and Rovers continue to be without Ross Etheridge, Luke McCullough, Andy Williams, Alex Kiwomya and Danny Andrew as they recover from their injuries.
Bristol Rovers boss Darrell Clarke as to check to see how many players have been affected by a virus which has affected the club this week. He wants to see his side bounce back after a disappointing 4-1 loss against Gillingham last weekend. Clarke has only made minimal changes to his team recently, but last week's defeat could persuade him to make changes today. He is also considering rotating his squad to keep the players fresh, but he could give Ollie Clarke and Chris Lines a chance in midfield today.
December 23, 2017
Ferguson looks forward
Doncaster Rovers begin a run of four games in a nine day period as we approach the Christmas and New Year set of fixtures, and success in most of those could propel Rovers away from the lower reaches of the League One table. They go in to the festive period just three matches above the relegation places, and Darren Ferguson knows that it is an important time for the club.
Speaking on BBC Radio Sheffield this week, he said: "It`s a very crucial period, it always is and it always will be. There are so many games and so many points to play for in such a quick space of time. You have four games in nine days, so it is a really important period, given the opposition also, the first three teams of the four are all around us, and so it makes it even more important. It is a crucial period but we will take it a game at a time."
Ferguson is aware that today's opponents, Bristol Rovers, will pose a significant threat to his side, but says that he goes into the game with a plan in mind.
Speaking in his pre-match press conference, he said: "They got heavily beaten on Saturday [at Gillingham] but in the two previous home games they beat Rotherham and comfortably beat Southend. They’re a big team, physical, they go back to front very quickly so we’ll have to match all that, physicality, set pieces are a real threat. Long throw. We’ll have to manage all that and the pitch, it’s heavy, it’s dead. Billy Bodin in particular is a threat so we will consider that but we’ll compete as are expected to do."
"The last two home games they’ve done well, they’ve been very aggressive, up and at you and in your face. So that’s the game I’m expecting."
December 23, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this afternoon's away game at Bristol Rovers are:
Referee: Dean Whitestone
Assistant referees: Robert Dabbs and Ian Rathbone
Fourth Official: Grant Taylor
December 23, 2017
Pilgrims hope Matthews will return
Plymouth Argyle are hoping to persuade Norwich City to allow goalkeeper Remi Matthews to return to the club in the New Year as their goalkeeping problems continue.
Argyle have gone through a remarkable seven goalkeepers this season as an injury jinx as struck in spectacular style - and Matthews himself as been an injury victim, with his loan at Home Park cut short in October.
But he has made enough of an impression on both the club and fans to persuade Plymouth boss Derek Adams to make a move to sign Remi on loan for the rest of the season.
Matthews has little chance of first team action at Norwich at the moment, and a loan move is understood to be under consideration by the Canaries so that he can gain first team match experience. Despite supposed interest from two other clubs, Plymouth are reported to be "encouraged" in their chances of getting their man.
At the moment, Argyle have Kelle Roos on emergency week to week loan from Derby. Their regular keepers are all injured - Luke McCormick (ankle), Robbert Te Loeke (back and ex-Rovers loanee Kyle Letheren (thigh). Their only other goalkeeping options at the moment are from the junior teams.
Letheren is expected to be first of the club's regular goalkeepers to return to fitness, but that is not expected until February.
Matthews has only just signed a contract extension at Norwich, but despite having no first team games to his name there, has had loan spells at Burton Albion, Doncaster Rovers and Hamilton Academical before signing for Argyle in the autumn of this year.
December 21, 2017
Port Vale 6 Rovers Reserves 0
Doncaster Rovers went down to a heavy defeat at Port Vale earlier in the week, conceding six goals in the second half after a first half which ended goalless.
Port Vale included former Rover Harry Middleton in their side, with the home side more experienced than their Rovers opponents.
As Rovers Development boss John Schofield commented afterwards: "They did have a lot of experience in their side but for our lads that is the level they have to be looking to get to. We're not going to start looking for excuses, we will learn a lot from the defeat and we have to improve and work together. Defeats can sometimes teach you more of a lesson than when you win, we will take the good things from the first half and learn from what we didn't do right after half time."
Rovers played quite well before the interval, but could not keep up when Vale stepped up a couple of gears in the second half.
Port Vale: Rob Lainton (Joe Slinn 80), Lawrie Wilson, Tyler Denton, Harry Middleton, Joe Davis (Billy Reeves 60), Graham Kelly, Dan Turner, Chris Regis, Trialist, Anton Forrester, Anthony De Freitas.
Substitutes not used: Harry Benns, Matty Ward, Josh Ryder
Doncaster Rovers: Louis Jones, Tyler Walker (Jordan Tucker 75), Cody Prior, Anthony Greaves, Reece Fielding, Danny Amos, Morgan James, Will Longbottom, Lewis Scattergood (Myron Gibbons 65), Rilwan Olaosun (Matty Overton 65), James Morris (Matty Overton 76)
Substitutes not used: Keegan Townrow, Matty Overton
December 21, 2017
Baxendale joins Alfreton
Former Doncaster Rovers midfielder James Baxendale has joined Vanarama National League North club Alfreton Town - subject to receiving international clearance.
Baxendale only moved to the United States to play for Orange County after being released by Mansfield Town at the end of the 2016/17 season, and made 14 appearances in the US.
He joins on a contract until the end of the season, but his debut could be as early as Saturday, when Alfreton are at home to Boston United, but that is dependent on receiving the necessary confirmation.
James started as a youth team player at Leeds United before joining Doncaster Rovers in July 2011, making his Rovers debut against Tranmere Rovers in a League Cup game, making his league debut four days later against West Ham United.
He moved on to Walsall in August 2012 after finishing the previous season on loan at Hereford United, but injuries limited his appearances in the 2014/15 season, and he subsequently joined Mansfield on a one month loan in January 2016, with the move then made permanent the next month.
Alfreton boss John McDermott commented: "We are delighted to have James with us, he’s a very good player, excellent with either feet, intelligent, good movement and he creates. He does well to keep hold of it, he can interchange in and around the box. He can play the number 10 role and if we need him to he can switch onto either wing. He loves to roam and is a very fit player. Very hardworking, he always wants the ball and he will make us tick. We’ve beaten other clubs to his signature and it hasn’t been down to money, he’s a local lad and we’ve had lots of chats, it’s been a long process to get him. It’s stepping stones for the club at the moment, getting the right players in to suit the style and James is another who does that."
December 21, 2017
Cotterill released by Birmingham
Ex-Rovers winger David Cotterill has left Championship club Birmingham City after having his contract cancelled by mutual consent.
He would have been out of contract in the summer, with this news meaning that he can find a new club in the January transfer window. He joined Birmingham from Rovers in summer 2014 and was a regular in the early part of his stay at the club, but a change of manager meant that he ceased to be a first team regular, and he has made only 8 appearances, including three starts, so far this season.
After holding "showdown talks" with boss Steve Cotterill, the decision was made for him to leave the club after the boss made it clear that David did not feature in his plans for the rest of the season.
After leaving, the winger said: "Gutted to be leaving BCFC. I’ve loved my time here. I want to thank the fans, my team-mates, all of the coaching staff. Also my wife and family for always supporting me. I hope the club can turn things around and get back to where it deserves and that’s in the Premier League."
December 21, 2017
Rovers to wear charity kit on Boxing Day
Doncaster Rovers have revealed that they will be wearing a one-off light blue kit for the home game against Northampton Town on Boxing Day to raise awareness of the charity "Campaign Against Living Miserably" (CALM).
The kit worn on the day will be subsequently auctioned off to raise money for the charity; in addition a limited run of 150 shirts will be on sale in the club shop on Boxing Day.
Anyone buying a ticket for the Northampton game on-line will see £5 of their ticket price also donated to the charity.
December 19, 2017
Travel information to Peterborough United
The Doncaster Rovers Supporters Club are running coaches to the away game at Bristol Rovers on Monday, 1st January.
They will leave Retford at 10.45am, Harworth 10.50am, Bawtry 11.00am, Rossington Styrrup 11.00am, Hare & Tortoise 11.10am, Doncaster Royal Infirmary 11.15am, Waterdale 11.20am and the Keepmoat Stadium at 11.30am.
Fares for the trip will be:
Members: Adults £15 - Concessions £14
Non-members: Adults £17 - Concessions £16
To book a place on the coach, please phone Paul Mayfield 07961 727769 (after 6pm), Len South 01302 817347 (after 6pm), or Steve Warnes (North Branch) 07780 316923.
Bookings need to be made by the Wednesday before the game, but bearing in mind Bank Holidays, please book as early as possible.
December 19, 2017
McKay twins head to Cardiff
Paul and Jack McKay, who were on the books of Doncaster Rovers as youth team players, have gone to Cardiff City on trial after coming to an agreement with Leeds United to end their contracts a few months early.
The pair have been at Leeds for a a season and a half after moving on from Doncaster Rovers, and have been regulars in the Leeds Under 23 team, but the Yorkshire Post reports that they were likely to be released in the summer, so Cardiff's desire to build up their under-23 squad comes at the ideal time for them.
Present Cardiff boss Neil Warnock is keen to see an increase in the number of players progressing from their under-23 set-up after several years of very few getting through into the first team.
They were scheduled to take part in a Development XI fixture against Charlton Athletic yesterday afternoon, although with the team lists saying 'trialist', we can only presume that they both played.
December 19, 2017
Ferguson non-committal over Toffolo
Rovers boss Darren Ferguson is not telling what his plans are for cover at left back after on-loan Norwich player Harry Toffolo returned to East Anglia last week after breaking a bone in his foot. With an expected six weeks recovery time, it is uncertain that he will be fit when the transfer window closes at the end of January. That could mean that Ferguson has to look elsewhere, with only Tyler Garratt, who has not been a regular first team choice since joining the club last year, as a recognised left back.
Ferguson had previously indicated that he would like Toffolo to stay for the whole season, but his plans may now change.
He told the Doncaster Star: "Harry Toffolo has gone back. He’ll be out for six weeks with a broken foot. The problem we’ve got with H is that he probably wouldn’t be fit until the end of the month in January. We’ve only now have Tyler Garratt as a natural left back who is fit. We’ll look at it and do our work. But we feel that probably if it’s going to be that long then we may have to look at that."
December 19, 2017
Voting results v Oldham Athletic
Thank you to everyone who took part in the voting for the "Man of the Match" in Saturday's home game against Oldham Athletic.
Defender Andy Butler, scorer of the Rovers goal, was named as "Man of the Match" by the sponsors on Saturday, and he has also won the on-line vote, gaining just under half of all votes cast.
We received nominations for five different players, with two gaining significant amounts, which were:
1 Andy Butler (45.45%)
2 Alfie Beestin (27.27%)
The next poll will open following Saturday's away game at Bristol Rovers.
December 18, 2017
Injury update
No news on the longer term injured players, but on loan left back Harry Toffolo could well have played his last game for Doncaster Rovers after breaking a bone in his foot. He has returned to Norwich City for treatment, but the 22 year old is expected to be out of action for six weeks, so he could possibly just be fit for the end of the January transfer window. But Darren Ferguson is expected to explore alternatives when the transfer window opens in the New Year.
James Coppinger, who missed Saturday's game with a groin injury, could be fit for Saturday's away game at Bristol Rovers, while Matty Blair is not expected to be fit to play until the Boxing Day game against Northampton Town.
December 18, 2017
Blayney moves to Ballyclare
Former Doncaster Rovers goalkeeper Alan Blayney has joined Ballyclare Comrades on a transfer from Warrenpoint Town as Ballyclare push for promotion to the Danske Bank Premiership.
His signature is considered a 'coup' by boss Clifford Adams, who commented: "Everyone at the club is absolutely delighted to get Alan on board for the second half of the season. He will provide tough competition for Paddy Flood after we lost Geoff McKinty to a cruciate ligament injury. Since we discovered how serious Geoff's injury was we have been on the lookout for another quality goalkeeper, and when Alan showed an interest it really was a no-brainer."
"Alan had options for other clubs but once I spoke to him and explained what we were trying to do he quickly agreed to join. He has a wealth of experience at the top level of football both here and in England, and has won most things at Irish league level and captained Linfield during in his time there. I would personally like to thank Mathew Tipton at Warrenpoint with all his help in getting the signing sorted out, from the first time I rang him he was the consummate professional throughout the whole process."
December 18, 2017
A busy January for Ferguson?
There are eight players who will be out of contract at the end of the season, but Darren Ferguson will be concentrating on any incoming players and departures during the transfer window before discussing contract extensions with anyone.
He told the Doncaster Star last week: "There’s quite a few out of contract. Some of them will probably wait until February or after that. The most important thing is this season and how we deal with that."
It could well be that some fringe players, including some who will be out of contract in the summer, will be made available for loans. Andy williams, Ross Etheridge and Cedric Evina were three that Ferguson was hoping would leave in the summer, and their contract end in the summer, and are highly likely to leave.
But the likes of James Coppinger, Andy Butler and Joe Wright will hopefully be set for discussions over extensions to their stay at the club.
Mathieu Baudry and Craig Alcock are also understood to be out of contract at the end of the season.
Ferguson is understood to have discussed with the board potential new contracts and transfer targets for January, so it could be a busier than usual January for Rovers.
December 17, 2017
Rovers 1 Oldham Athletic 1
Another late goal denied Doncaster Rovers all three points again yesterday afternoon - although at least this time the equalising goal came within the regulation 90 minutes.
For much of the game there had been little between the two sides, and while both teams showed they were capable of playing a good passing game, too much time was taken up with the ball being up in the air and the players having insufficient time to really control the ball.
Yet both sides had their chances to break the deadlock in the first half, with Alfie May unlucky not to put Rovers in front but the Oldham goalkeeper pulled off a good save. Ian Lawlor had to come off his line promptly to snuff out another chance, and Andy Butler cleared the ball off the line when a goal bound shot by Nepomuceno seemed destined to find the back of the net.
There were periods when Rovers were forced back into their own half, with the visitors particularly looking dangerous down their left wing.
Rovers took the lead just short of the hour mark when Andy Butler's header cannoned down off the crossbar into the net following a well worked free kick taken by Tommy Rowe. And it looked promising after that - although Oldham continued to press forwards in search of the equaliser.
Rovers' frailty to conceding goals late in games eventually gave the Latics their point, with Doyle having the simple task of slotting the ball home from close range after a flick-on by Holloway.
December 17, 2017
Ferguson's frustration
Yet again Darren Ferguson had to give a match verdict after seeing his team concede a late goal which cost them dearly.
Speaking to BBC Radio Sheffield after the game, he commented: "It's a disappointing result, a really disappointing result. Again we've thrown away two points right at the death. At the moment we're just not getting the rub of the green, I don't care what anyone says watching our performances. We're not getting the rub of the green - it happens."
"What can you do when your centre half is going to head it away, he slips and Doyle scores. There's not a great deal I can do to prevent that incident but certainly in the last 15 minutes we didn't keep the ball well enough."
"Oldham threw about four or five players up front. We just needed to keep the ball and that is what I was disappointed with. When they're throwing everything up, just keep the ball and pass it around. It was a game I thought we should have won and I thought we were going to win it at the end with Tommy Rowe's shot taking a deflection. It's a disappointing result and the result is the most important thing."
December 17, 2017
Match highlights

Some match highlights of yesterday's home game against Oldham Athletic are available on the Sky Sports web site.
To view them, please click on their logo to the left.

December 17, 2017
Ticket information v Scunthorpe
Tickets for the forthcoming away game at Scunthorpe United have been received by Doncaster Rovers, but you will have to be patient, as they will not be putting them on sale until the New Year!
Rovers have received 600 tickets as an initial allocation for the game on Tuesday 23rd January.
As usual, the numerous different 'membership' packages issued mean there are a number of different dates that supporters can buy tickets for the game.
On Monday, 1st January, tickets are on sale to Silver membership holders and half season ticket holders (although whether the ticket office will actually be open on 1st January is uncertain).
On Monday, 8th January, a whole raft of other membership holders can buy tickets - Bronze, Academy, DNA, Alliance, Red Squad & Donny Squad Membership Holders.
And for anyone who doesn't fit into any of those categories, tickets go on general sale on Monday, 15th January.
Ticket prices for the match are:
Adults £23 - Senior Citizens (65+) £16 - Young adults (18-21) £16 - Students (with NUS card) £16 - Juniors (12-17) £7 - Juniors (Under 12s) £7 (free if accompanied by an adult, max of 2 per adult)
Please note that this is an all-ticket fixture and tickets will not be on sale on at Glanford Park on the day of the game.
December 16, 2017
Rovers v Oldham Athletic
Darren Ferguson does not have any new injury concerns ahead of this afternoon's home game against Oldham Athletic.
It is possible that Matty Blair will return after missing last weekend's game at Oxford with a calf injury, while Alfie May will again be included after making his first appearance last week since recovering from a hernia problem. It is unlikely that he will play the whole 90 minutes after the midweek reserve team game was called off, so he may well have to settle for a place on the bench.
Still absent are Ross Etheridge, Danny Andrew, Luke McCullough, Andy Williams and Alex Kiwomya.
Oldham are expected to field the same side that beat Northampton Town last week. Former Rovers midfielder Paul Green was an unused substitute last week as he made a come back after injury.
Ryan McLaughlin is close to a return after a two month absence, but Oldham's main concern is that they have had "an illness" in the squad, which is affecting four or five players. Boss Richie Wellens commented: "We have had an illness in the camp. There are four or five lads who are struggling. It’s not ideal but hopefully they may play,"
December 16, 2017
Strachan - expecting players to respond
Rovers' assistant manager Gavin Strachan is expecting the players to respond from the disappointment of a last gasp defeat last weekend by picking up all three points this afternoon.
Speaking ahead of the game, Gavin told DROS: "I think we’ve tried to emphasise the positives from last week and show them the good things from it, we had to pick the players up and quickly turn our attentions to this weekend’s game but the lads feel ready. Part of our job is to maintain the belief in the players and just ask them to produce on the pitch and the results will improve. We need to have a lot of energy and to be aggressive on and off the ball if we are to get a positive result, we want the players to have the belief that if they keep doing what we ask then our luck and results will change very soon."
December 16, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this afternoon's home game against Oldham Athletic are:
Referee: Gavin Ward
Assistant referees: Steven Rushton and Christopher Husband
Fourth official: Glen Hart
December 16, 2017
Wellens returns to the Keepmoat
Former Doncaster Rovers midfielder Richie Wellens returns to the Keepmoat Stadium this afternoon for the first time as a manager. He was appointed boss at Oldham Athletic earlier this season, and has seen a revival in the club's fortunes, although they are still not out of the relegation picture.
But will his history with Rovers be of help to him? Richie thinks it may, as he commented to the Manchester Evening News this week: "It definitely helps. When you watch videos of players all the time you still don't really know them, but I have my own personal view of them. I've seen three or four of the players inside out every day on the training ground, and I know what they can or can't do, so it's a massive advantage. It’s a club I know well and I really enjoyed my time there but it is important that we put on a performance to try and get us the three points. The main thing for me is can I come away at 5:30pm and say that we're nine points above the relegation zone, that's my only concern."
December 15, 2017
Kiwomya in line for New Year comeback
Earlier in the season, it was feared that new signing Alex Kiwomya would miss the whole of the season due to a rare auto-immune condition called Guillain-Barre syndrome.
The condition left him unable to train, but things have moved on a great deal since then, and the former Chelsea man has been working with the fitness coaches, who anticipate that Alex could be back in action as early as January.
Darren Ferguson explained to the Doncaster Free Press last week: "He was out on the training ground on Thursday afternoon doing a session with the fitness coach. He looks good, really good. We would hope that he starts training at the beginning of the year."
"He’s doing a mini-preseason now. He’s been handed over from the physios to the fitness coaches and he’ll spend the whole of this month doing a pre-season. If he gets through that then, touch wood, he’ll then be back training with us. If he does that then you’d be looking at seeing him in mid-January."
With Rovers needing to boost their firepower this season, with last season's top scorer John Marquis not as prolific this time around, Kiwomya's return to fitness will be a big boost to the squad.
Ferguson continued: "He gives us something totally different which we’ve needed at times this season."
December 15, 2017
Reserve game rearranged
Doncaster Rovers have announced that a new date for the reserve team game at Walsall has been agreed.
The game was due to be played on Tuesday of this week, but was postponed due to the wintry conditions in the Midlands.
The new date for the game will be Tuesday, 13th March with a 2pm kick-off, with the game being played at Birmingham County Football Association headquarters.
December 15, 2017
Ticket info for both Rochdale games
Doncaster Rovers have confirmed ticketing arrangements for the two home games against Rochdale after Christmas. With two games against the same opposition - a league game on 29th December and an FA Cup game on 6th January - Rovers have reduced prices in the hope of boosting attendances for both games.
For the league game on Friday, 29th December, ticket prices will be:
Adults £10 - Concessions £5 - Juniors (17 & under) £1
For the FA Cup game, prices will be:
Adults £15 - Concessions £10 - Juniors (17 & under) £5
We note that the date for the league game has been moved forward from the Saturday afternoon to the Friday evening with a 7:45pm kick-off.
December 15, 2017
South Africa to review policy after Fortune row
The South African Football Association is to review their policy on the hiring of coaching staff for the national team following a backlash from the public over the appointment of former Rovers midfielder Quinton Fortune to the coaching staff earlier this year.
The South African FA are said to be stunned by the reaction from the public and media which has led to a proposed change. So far, the manager of the national team has been appointed by them, with the manager than appointing the other staff they wished to assist them.
SAFA president Danny Jordan has told the "Sowetan Live" web site: "I think perhaps there must be policy review on that question because we did and what we’ve consistently done is that we only appoint the senior coach and the senior coach appoints everybody else (in the technical team)‚. ‘And that has been what we have been doing over the years. But I think it is time to say ’no‚ you recommend and we take the final decision and not you take the final decision and inform us."
Fortune has a history of turning down international call-ups during his playing career, and it seems he has thus turned public opinion against him.
December 14, 2017
Ameobi released by Edmonton
Former Doncaster Rovers loan striker Tomi Ameobi has been released by FC Edmonton after being at the club for the last four seasons.
Ameobi is only one of three players to have played over 100 games for the club.
He is one of four players to be released by Edmonton at the end of their contracts.
There is expectation that he will find another club in the North American Soccer League, with New York Cosmos mentioned in their press as a possible destination.
The US league runs on the calendar year, so they are currently in their closed season.
Edmonton boss Colin Miller (another former Doncaster Rovers player) issued a statement on behalf of the club which said: "The commitment shown by these four individuals to FC Edmonton throughout the years is a testament to their ability and mindset as professionals. Their play on the pitch will be remembered by the club and its fans as some of the best talent the city of Edmonton has had the honour of experiencing, and it's been an absolute pleasure working alongside them throughout the years."
"FC Edmonton sends its best wishes to each player moving forward and thanks them for their contributions to the club."
December 14, 2017
Highfield is new chief at Frickley
Ex-Doncaster Rovers director Stuart Highfield has been named as the new chairman at Frickley Athletic.
Highfield was on the board at Rovers during John Ryan's time at the club and is keen to see Frickley rise to Conference level as soon as possible.
Frickley director Ryan McKnight welcomed him to the club by saying: "This is a huge achievement for Frickley to have someone of Stuart’s experience and nous contributing his expertise to the club. I think it’s a clear signal of the continued professionalisation of the football club and we’re very excited to welcome him to the board."
Highfield added in a comment to the Hemsworth and South Elmsall Express: "The playing side seems to be sorting itself out, but there’s a few off the field things we can improve. It’s just a little bit of structure, looking at how we can involve the local community and schools. Now the new changing rooms are available and there’s a small function room we’d like to get the community involved in that as well."
"We’ll see if we can improve attendances and just move things on so that we can eventually even get Conference status."
"I think my experience at Doncaster will help, without a shadow of a doubt. And I’ve got a football background. It seems to be a little bit of a forgotten area,between Doncaster and Wakefield. There’s huge potential here."
December 14, 2017
Paynter joins Warrington
Ex-Rovers player Paul Carden, now manager at Evo-Stik Premier League promotion challengers Warrington Town, has pulled off a "transfer coup" by signing experienced former Rovers striker Billy Paynter.
The 33 year old striker was at Hartlepool United last season and was part of their coaching team after the departure of former manager Dave Jones, but has a long list of former clubs, including Port Vale, Hull City, Southend United, Swindon Town, Doncaster Rovers and Carlisle United.
December 14, 2017
Ticket information v Peterborough
Doncaster Rovers have announced arrangements for the sale of tickets for the away game at Peterborough United, which is to be played on New Year's Day.
Rovers have received an allocation of 923 tickets for the fixture which, in the usual Rovers way, will go on sale to different categories of people at different times.
Tickets are already on sale to Silver, Bronze, Academy, DNA, Alliance, Red Squad and Donny Squad membership holders. Any tickets that remain unsold from this lengthy list will go on general sale from Monday, 18th December.
The prices for tickets bought in advance are:
Adults £26 - Senior Citizens (60+) £21 - Young adults (18-21) £17 - Juniors (12-17) £10 - Juniors (7-11) £8 - Juniors (Under 7) £1
Cash turnstiles will operate on the day, but the prices will rise to:
Adults £28 - Senior Citizens (60+) £23 - Young adults (18-21) £19 - Juniors (12-17) £11 - Juniors (7-11) £9 - Juniors (Under 7) £1
December 13, 2017
Oldham ticket offer
We only spotted it because of an email, but there is a special ticket offer available for tickets for Saturday's home game against Oldham Athletic.
There are 250 tickets for the South Stand available at £10 and at the time of receipt of the email, there were a "limited amount" of these tickets still available.
It seems there is a "Club Doncaster Advent Calendar", of which this was the offer on Day 1, so apologies if the discounted tickets have all been sold by now.
To take advantage of the offer, the instructions are to buy your ticket on line and enter voucher code "OLD17" at the point of payment.
December 13, 2017
Ferguson keen to keep Houghton
Darren Ferguson is keep to keep midfielder Jordan Houghton beyond the January transfer window, and has raised the possibility that this could either be as an extension of the existing loan, or as a permanent transfer.
The loan deal is up for review in the January transfer window, but Ferguson wants to keep the Chelsea player beyond that.
He told the Doncaster Free Press recently: "With Jordan, there is a conversation to be had with Chelsea whether it can be permanent or a continuation of the loan. There’s a conversation needed to be had in terms of what they want really. We need to speak with Chelsea and also in-house here about whether it can be done. We’ve had conversations with them already but no concrete answers."
"Jordan needs to know because he’s got a contract with Chelsea. I have to be careful with the conversations I have with the boy because it all depends on what Chelsea want to do and we’re not at that stage."
Ferguson has also confirmed that he would like to extend the loans of Ben Whiteman and Rodney Kongolo for the rest of the season, and hopes to have news of those before the end of the year.
December 13, 2017
New date for Scunthorpe match
A new date for the away game at Scunthorpe United has been agreed between the two club.
The original date of Saturday, 6th January, was impossible due to Rovers having a third round FA Cup game against Rochdale on that day.
The match will now be played on Tuesday, 23rd January with a 7:45pm kick-off.
Ticket details for the game will be confirmed nearer to the date of the match.
December 13, 2017
Crosby joins Adkins at Hull
Former Doncaster Rovers defender Andy Crosby has teamed up with Nigel Adkins again to become the new management team at Premier League club Hull City.
Hull announced last Thursday that Adkins would become their new manager as they look to improve the league position of the Tigers, who have had three previous managers in the last twelve months, with a regular turn-round of managers since Steve Bruce left.
Crosby has, like Adkins, signed an 18 month contract at the KC Stadium.
December 13, 2017
Pugh joins Tadcaster
Tadcaster Albion, who play in the Evo-Stik League North, have announced that they have signed former Doncaster Rovers striker Joe Pugh.
He signed in time to play in last week's away game at league leaders South Shields.
Pugh, now aged 20, joins Tadcaster from League North's bottom club, North Ferriby United, with the youngster hoping that the move can kick-start his career.
December 12, 2017
Travel information to Bristol Rovers
The Doncaster Rovers Supporters Club are running coaches to the away game at Bristol Rovers on Saturday, 23rd December.
They will leave Retford at 8.30am, Harworth 8.35am, Bawtry 8.45am, Rossington Styrrup 8.45am, Hare & Tortoise 8.50am, Doncaster Royal Infirmary 9.00am, Waterdale 9.05am and the Keepmoat Stadium at 9.15am.
Fares for the trip will be:
Members: Adults £23 - Concessions £21
Non-members: Adults £25 - Concessions £23
To book a place on the coach, please phone Paul Mayfield 07961 727769 (after 6pm), Len South 01302 817347 (after 6pm), or Steve Warnes (North Branch) 07780 316923.
Bookings need to be made by the Wednesday before the game.
December 12, 2017
Reserve game postponed
Doncaster Rovers' Central League Development away fixture against Walsall, which was scheduled to be played at Birmingham County FA, has been postponed due to the adverse weather conditions in the Birmingham area.
A new date for this fixture will be confirmed in due course.
December 12, 2017
Oscar joins Yeovil
Former Doncaster Rovers midfielder Oscar Gobern has joined Yeovil Town on a short term contract until the end of the 2017/18 season.
The 26 year old has been training with the Glovers for the last few weeks, but was a free agent, so was able to sign outside the 'transfer window'.
Now aged 26, Gobern has been assigned squad number 20 at Yeovil.
A former Southampton trainee, Birmingham born Gobern then joined Huddersfield Town, where he stayed for four years, with a loan spell at MK Dons coming along the way. He then signed for Queens Park Rangers in 2015 before joining Doncaster Rovers on loan later that season. His season was prematurely ended with an anterior cruciate ligament injury. Oscar then had short spells with Mansfield Town and Ross County last season.
December 12, 2017
Wakefield leaves Boston
Ex-Rovers defender Liam Wakefield has been released by Boston United after only a short time at the club.
He was one of three to be released by Boston earlier this month, along with coach Karl Hawley and goalkeeping coach Dave McCarthy, with another leaving on loan.
Liam was released at the end of his contract at Morecambe at the end of last season after a twelve month stay, and only joined Boston in September.
December 11, 2017
Oxford United 1 Rovers 0
It seems that "Fergie time" seems to be backfiring on Doncaster Rovers this season, for some strange reason.
This is not the first time that Rovers have conceded a goal well into time added on at the end of a game, and it must be a mystery to the team management as to why.
Oxford United scored the vital winning goal in the sixth minute of added time with virtually the last kick of the game, with a shot from Ruffells from outside the penalty area into the bottom corner of the net out of the reach of Ian Lawlor.
Rovers had dominated the second half as they looked to win the game against Oxford, who had lost their last three matches, and looked to have "got away with it" when Ian Lawlor saved a penalty awarded somewhat dubiously in the 79th minute.
Rovers gave starts to Jordan Houghton, who replaced the injured Matty Blair, Harry Toffolo, who replaced Tyler Garratt, and a first ever start to Alfie Beestin. Striker Alfie May had to settle for a place on the bench after being declared fit during the week after an absence due to a hernia problem.
Scoring chances for either side were scarce in the first half, although Marquis was denied with a powerful header which took the Oxford keeper two attempts to gather the ball. Oxford had an appeal for a penalty turned down when Wes Tomas went down in a challenge with Andy Butler, but the referee was unimpressed by the appeal.
Rovers started the second half well and took the game to their opponents with a couple of shots by Rowe, the first of which rattled the post and rolled along the face of the goal before going wide.
And then came the penalty award, but the offence seemed to be committed outside the penalty area, so perhaps justice was done when Lawlor chose to dive the right way and saved the resulting spot kick.
Three minutes were shown to be added to the end of the game, but with an injury to Toffolo, that time was extended - but by three minutes?
December 11, 2017
Ferguson's view
Darren Ferguson was clearly unhappy at the amount of time added on at the end of Saturday's game at Oxford United, which saw Rovers concede the only goal of the game.
He complained after the match: "The fourth official puts up three minutes of stoppage time and we play six and a half minute. I just don’t get it. Six and a half minutes!"
"He gave them a penalty which was never a penalty. He gave them that because he didn’t give them one in the first half and that was never a penalty. The ball was out of play, clearly out of play, in the build-up to the goal. The game should be finished by the time the ball is put in the net. It’s painful, a really painful dressing room. It’s about winning football game and we can go on about performances as much as we want. We’ve lost today and we shouldn’t have lost. I’m going into the officials because I can’t accept that. These people have got to do their job and they haven’t done their job today. I can’t understand six and a half minutes. It’s bizarre."
However, of the team's performance, Ferguson was pleased with the way they played, saying: "We pressed them really well and we knew we’d get opportunities to do that with the way Oxford play. I thought our pressing was excellent and they couldn’t handle that. We kept winning the ball high up the pitch. We’re a fit team and we want to play with that intensity. We’re playing well at the moment and we’ve been unfortunate."
"The Wigan game, you can take out of the last ten, because we were well-beaten by a very good team. But apart from that the level of performance has been much better. I saw some good stuff. We didn’t score but we had good chances and we created chances. If we get performances like that, I’d imagine we’d win games."
December 11, 2017
Match highlights

Match highlights of Saturday's game at Oxford United are now available on the Sky Sports web site.
To view them, please click on the logo to the left

December 11, 2017
McIndoe cleared of fraud
Former Doncaster Rovers winger Michael McIndoe has been cleared in a fraud investigation after being accused of financial wrong-doing which saw a number of footballers lose considerable amounts of money.
Previous press reports had suggested that this outcome was unlikely - but the Scot was jubilant after receiving confirmation that no further action would be taken.
The first allegations were made in 2015, but after a lengthy investigation, Scotland Yard have issued a statement which read: "In February 2015, an allegation of fraud was made to Westminster CID. Following an initial investigation, the matter was deemed a civil matter and the victim informed. Further allegations were subsequently reported to police via Action Fraud. These were assessed and an investigation was launched by officers from Falcon. 37-year-old man was interviewed under caution in connection with the investigation on Tuesday, 10 January. No further action will be taken. The investigation is closed."
McIndoe spoke to the Bristol Post after hearing the news, and said: "I have to say that I'm really happy that finally my name has been completely and officially cleared of these false allegations that were made several years ago. As far as I'm concerned I've always known and maintained thoroughly that there was no wrong doing on my part but until I got official proof, which is what happened today."
"Scotland Yard emailed my solicitor who passed it onto myself, and as you know the police and the CPS have to make a decision, and they've decided that no further action will be taken and my name is obviously completely cleared."
McIndoe then levelled his fire at the tabloid press, adding: "I think it's important because there's been that much rubbish and untrue stuff written about me in the last five years but it's important now that I have the proof to set the record straight that there was no wrongdoing on my part in any way."
McIndoe has recently had his autobiography released titled "Wilding", which is reported to put his side of the story.
December 9, 2017
Oxford United v Rovers
Doncaster Rovers will have Jordan Houghton and Alfie May back in the squad for this afternoon's trip to Oxford United, hoping to extend their run of just one defeat in the last five league games, which was away at leaders Wigan Athletic.
Houghton missed last week's FA Cup tie after returning to Chelsea for treatment on a knee injury, but has returned to full training this week. May has missed several matches since having a hernia problem in October, but has been back in training this week, although Darren Ferguson is yet to decide on whether he will start the game or not, as he is unlikely to be given a full 90 minutes.
Matty Blair will miss the game owing to a calf injury suffered in the Scunthorpe, and he joins the other longer term injury casualties who will be absent - Alex Kiwomya, Andy Williams, Luke McCullough, Danny Andrew and Ross Etheridge.
Oxford have an injury doubt over midfielder James Henry, who was substituted during the midweek game against Gillingham owing to a knee problem. James has played all 20 league games so far this season, and boss Pep Clotet expects him to be fit to play today.
Oxford will have Josep Fernandez Codina back after being suspended last week, while long term injury casualties Joe Rothwell, Curtis Nelson and Robbie Hall will miss the game. Joe Rothwell could feature after returning to training this week after recovering from a hamstring injury.
December 9, 2017
Ferguson to be careful with Alfie's return
Darren Ferguson welcomes striker Alfie May back into the Doncaster Rovers squad for this afternoon's away game at Oxford United, but is not wanting to rush his progress.
He explained to the Yorkshire Post: "Alfie will be back in the squad and we probably need to get another game into him before he’s ready to start, but if needed we’ve got him to call upon."
He added: "It’s the decision we have to make on whether we would bring him off the bench or play him for an hour to start with, but that’s a good headache to have. We have to look after him with the injury he had, the medical team have told us that he’s ready, so we trust their judgement.”
December 9, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this afternoon's away League One game at Oxford United are:
Referee: Sebastian Stockbridge
Assistant referees: Kevin Morris and Steven Plane
Fourth Official: Sian Massey-Ellis
December 9, 2017
Hume is new assistant at Scarborough
Former Doncaster Rovers defender Mark Hume has been appointed as the new assistant manager at Scarborough Athletic following the departure of Chris Bolder to North Ferriby United at the beginning of December.
Hume has previous managerial experience at Matlock Town and Sheffield FC, but left Sheffield in September due to outside commitment.
Boro' boss Steve Kittrick commented: "I've known Mark a long time and he has a vast amount of experience to bring to the club. He's been part of teams like Barrow and Alfreton at National League level and recently managed Sheffield FC in the Evo-Stik South. I've tried to sign Mark a few times as a player and I think he'll be a major asset for us moving forward."
December 9, 2017
Voting results v Scunthorpe
There was only one player in the running for the "Man of the Match" voting for last weekend's FA Cup game against Scunthorpe United. While we received nominations for five different players, all the rest were left well behind Tommy Rowe, who picked up two out of every three votes placed. No doubt much of the recognition was for his second successive two goal haul which played a big part in Rovers reaching Round 3 of the FA Cup.
December 7, 2017
McSheffrey leaves Eastleigh
Former Doncaster Rovers player Gary McSheffrey has left Eastleigh after only a short time of the club, with the issue of having the rest of his family based "up north" mentioned to be the reason.
McSheffrey joined the Spitfires in September on a short term contract until January, but it was mutually agreed that he would end his time on the south coast earlier than planned.
McSheffrey told the Daily Echo: "I’d like to thank everybody involved with Eastleigh FC for my short spell there. After a discussion with the manager, we agreed to bring my contract to an early end as it was proving difficult logistically with a young family. I wish them all the best and hope they can achieve their ambitions of being a Football League club in the future."
He scored two goals in the 11 games he played for Eastleigh.
December 7, 2017
Nelthorpe joins North Ferriby
Former Doncaster Rovers winger Craig Nelthorpe has joined Vanarama National League North club North Ferriby United.
Since leaving Doncaster Rovers, 30 year old Craig has played for several clubs - Gateshead, Gainsborough Trinity, Winterton Rangers, Matlock, Eastwood Town, Brigg Town, Frickley Athletic, Oxford United and Harrogate Town before moving to Australia to play for Mornington in early 2015. Since then he has played for Matlock and Scarborough.
December 7, 2017
Rankine set for loan move
Former Doncaster Rovers youth teamer Michael Rankine is set to move out on loan from York City as he strives to regain full match fitness following a lengthy absence.
He has not played or trained since mid-September when a high blood pressure problem was diagnosed, but he has now been given permission to resume training by club doctors. Boss Martin Gray is keen to see him go out on loan to another club so he can return to York ready to challenge for a first team place in early 2018.
Gray told the York Press: "It’s good to have him back because he’s a lively, larger-than-life character. Now, in the next week or two hopefully, he can go out on loan and get some games and, rather than reserve fixtures, it would be better if he can play for another team at this level. Then, come Christmas time or the New Year, he will come back and have a chance here."
December 7, 2017
QPR explain Kazenga absence
Ex-Rovers loan player Kazenga LuaLua has not played for Queens Park Rangers since the end of September, prompting speculation as to his future at the club.
However, it turns out he is struggling to get over a family bereavement in recent months, with boss Ian Holloway explaining: "I think his loss of confidence and the loss of his father has really hit him. I have to make some decisions on that but at the minute he hasn't changed my mind. If he wants to, that's great. He still trains with us and works with us."
December 6, 2017
Rovers 3 Scunthorpe United 0
Doncaster Rovers went through to the third round of this year's FA Cup with a convincing victory over local rivals Scunthorpe United, duly gaining revenge for their home loss to the Iron back in September.
In the end it was relatively easy against one of the form teams in League One, with Rovers taking the game to Scunthorpe from the start. Rovers could have had an early lead when the Scunthorpe goalkeeper dropped a corner, but John Marquis only managed to poke the ball wide.
It was another goalkeeping error that led to Rovers' first goal. A long ball reached Gilks, the Scunthorpe keeper, but his clearance was charged down by the on-coming Tommy Rowe, who chipped the ball over the stranded keeper into the net. Niall Mason then had to clear a shot off the line, but it took until the hour mark for the visitors to draw the first real save out of Ian Lawlor. Rovers responded by doubling their lead, with Rowe working his way past three Scunthorpe defenders before firing into the bottom corner.
Liam Mandeville bagged Rovers' third in time added on at the end of the match to confirm Rovers' superiority in the game.
Somewhat later than it ought to be, but the "Man of the Match" voting is now open, and will remain open until early Friday morning.
December 6, 2017
What the managers said
A 'delighted' Darren Ferguson spoke to the press after Sunday's FA Cup victory over Scunthorpe, which Rovers won emphatically to reach the third round.
Speaking on BBC Radio Sheffield after the game, he said: "I’m absolutely delighted with the players. We were brave on the ball and we played the way I wanted them to. That’s what pleased me the most, the way we try to play, today we were very good at it. When we are, we’re a good team."
"It was a comfortable win. We started on the front foot, winning second balls, pressing them, but some of the football was outstanding. We started off really well and pressed them into making mistakes, I think that's the best all round performance we've produced this season. Going up against the form team in the country it was always going to be tough and we had to be smart in the way we played. Scunthorpe will be right up there at the end of the season but we didn't give them a minute, we kept to our game plan and that paid off for us. We did a lot of things very well today and it was a complete performance from the team."
The Scunthorpe manager, Graham Alexander, reckoned that his side were below par during the game, commenting to the Scunthorpe Telegraph: "In all aspects of our game we were out of character. We know the standards we set ourselves as a group and we were below them today. It was a down day for everybody. We have had them before and we will have them again but it is important we hit the heights we know we can."
"Apart from half time to their second goal, when we were the team in the ascendancy, we didn’t really play how we play. Sometimes we weren’t allowed to play as there were some really strange decisions especially with the first two bookings. It meant we couldn’t compete at the highest level, which compounded the performance. It was a disappointing day in the fact that we lost and the manner of the goals was really disappointing as well because it is not like us."
December 6, 2017
And in the third round, Rovers are drawn against.....
With all League One and two clubs in the third round dreaming of a draw against a "big" Premier League or Championship club, it was a bit deflating to find that Rovers are drawn against League One rivals Rochdale. Admittedly the draw is at home, which should give Rovers a decent chance of reaching the fourth round, but it's hardly the dream tie that many would have wanted.
In fact, by the time the FA Cup tie is played, it will be the fourth game between the two clubs this season, with a home league game against Rochdale only the previous weekend.
Rochdale won the league game at Spotland in September, and won the Checkatrade encounter recently on penalties, so it will be payback time for Rovers, with a bit of luck.
The games will be played in the first weekend of January 2018, but a date for the fixture has yet to be confirmed, although it will be unlikely that the Sky Sports cameras will select it for live coverage to take it away from the traditional Saturday afternoon!
December 6, 2017
Callum leaves Pickering
Former Rovers youth team player Callum Terrell has left NCEL club Pickering Town after only a short time with the club. He is expected to join NCEL Premier League strugglers Barton Town shortly.
Since leaving Rovers, Callum has also played for Wrexham, Bradford Park Avenue and Scarborough.
December 6, 2017
Matthews returns to Canaries
Former Rovers loan goalkeeper Remi Matthews has returned to Norwich City from his loan at Plymouth Argyle after becoming yet another victim of the jinxed goalkeeper's jersey at Home Park.
The 23 year old was the fifth goalkeeper Plymouth had used so far this season, which led to the signing of a sixth, Will Mannion, from Hull City. Matthews picked up a shin injury in Plymouth's defeat against Portsmouth after impressing in his previous performances for the club.
While first choice keeper Luke McCormick has now regained fitness and played at the weekend, Plymouth are still relying on youth team keepers for cover on the bench. There are strong hints that Plymouth boss Derek Adams will try to sign Matthews on loan for the rest of the season when the January transfer window opens.
December 3, 2017
Rovers v Scunthorpe United
Doncaster Rovers will be trying to reach the third round of the FA Cup this afternoon as they face Scunthorpe United at the Keepmoat Stadium.
If you disregard the numerous changes made for the Checkatrade Trophy game on Tuesday, Darren Ferguson is unlikely to make many changes to his starting line-up, although Alfie Beestin should be hoping for more time on the pitch after transforming last Saturday's league game in the second half. Also in with a chance of a recall will be Ben Whiteman, Niall Mason and Liam Mandeville.
Rovers will be without a number of injured players - Andy Williams, Luke McCullough, Alfie May, Alex Kiwomya, Danny Andrew and Ross Etheridge. May is close to a return to action after resuming training, but today's game is a little too early for him.
Scunthorpe United could see striker Simon Church return to the side after resuming training this week, but are set to be without Lee Novak, who missed last week's game at Charlton Athletic due to injury. Defender Jordan Clarke will also miss the game after struggling with a hamstring injury recently. The longer term injured players Sam Mantom, Luke Williams and Jonathan Margetts will also be absent today.
December 3, 2017
Ferguson eyes the third round
Boss Darren Ferguson has pledged to name the strongest side possible as he has one eye on the third round draw.
He commented: "I will pick what I feel is the strongest team on the day. It is a game we want to win and we want to get through. I think I have shown all along that I want to play my strongest team and Sunday is no different.
He added: "I will reflect back to the Arsenal game in the Carabao Cup as we got a big side in the third round of that competition and it was a great day out for the fans. There are a lot of things that add up for us, in a cup match you go out to win and that’s what we will try and do because I do not want a replay."
"It’s important you progress as far as you can and it’s especially important for the club, it’s a local derby that everyone wants to win then the third round the big teams start to come in and we all love a cup run."
December 3, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials who have been appointed for this afternoon's second round FA Cup tie against Scunthorpe United are:
Referee: Mark Heywood
Assistant referees: Ian Dudley and Nick Hopton
Fourth official: Graham Salisbury
December 3, 2017
Travel information to Oxford United
The Doncaster Rovers Supporters Club are running coaches to the away game at Oxford United on Saturday, 9th December.
They will leave Retford at 9.00am, Harworth 9.05am, Bawtry 9.15am, Rossington Styrrup 9.15am, Hare & Tortoise 9.20am, Doncaster Royal Infirmary 9.30am, Waterdale 9.35am and the Keepmoat Stadium at 9.45am.
Fares for the trip will be:
Members: Adults £20 - Concessions £18
Non-members: Adults £22 - Concessions £20
To book a place on the coach, please phone Paul Mayfield 07961 727769 (after 6pm), Len South 01302 817347 (after 6pm), or Steve Warnes (North Branch) 07780 316923.
Bookings need to be made by the Wednesday before the game.