October 30, 2017
Bury 0 Rovers 1
Doncaster Rovers picked up a valuable three points against Bury on Saturday, although it took them some time to covert possession into that vital goal, which came 12 minutes from the end of the game, with Ben Whiteman controlling the ball well after a corner was only partially cleared, and firing it into the top corner of the goal.
Rovers opted to play just John Marquis up front and playing three at the back as Darren Ferguson tweaked his formation to find a winning formula.
Rovers started brightly and threatened the Bury goal in the early stages of the game with Coppinger and Kongolo having half-chances. Bury, even though they went into the game on the back of three defeats, had their moments, with Beckford firing just wide - but it was not to be a good day for the former Leeds striker, who went off injured in the 38th minute. And it got worse for the home side in time added on at the end of the first half, with O'Connell being shown a red card from bringing down John Marquis as he bore down on goal. That foul was only just a couple of feet short of the penalty area, but the resulting free kick went just past the post.
During the second half, Rovers brought on Andy Williams to supplement their attacking force and the pressure eventually told when Rovers got their winning goal on 77 minutes.
The result sees Rovers move clear of the bottom four, but they need to continue to pick up points consistently over the next few matches to calm a few nerves among both the club and supporters.
October 30, 2017
What the managers said
Darren Ferguson hoped for a good reaction to last week's home defeat to Walsall, and he was pleased with the way that the players went about their work at Bury on Saturday.
Speaking after the game, he commented: "It was an important victory. It was important to get a reaction after last week. It felt like a long week. It was thoroughly deserved. We had to dig it out because it can be difficult against 10 men. The longer the game goes on, their fans start to get up."
"I was generally quite pleased with the first half, then I spoke to the players at half-time about not getting frustrated. It might be the last minute but I knew we'd get our chances, and Whiteman's produced a real bit of quality. It was a fantastic finish."
"We took a lot of criticism last week - and quite rightly. But this is what the game's like. One minute you're up, the next minute you're down. What we've not had is consistency in our results and that's something we have to find, but it was a good win and a good clean sheet."
Bury manager Lee Clark is a man under pressure as his side went down to another defeat, even though for much of the second half it looked as if his side could hang on for a much needed point despite having to play the second half with ten men.
He said after the game: "We've lost four on the bounce and I know the business I'm in. It's not a great run that we're on but I'm working hard every day. I believe I'm the right man to turn it around. I think the players are with us, they showed us that spirit with a man down. I thought the players gave everything they could in the second half but it was always going to be tough."
"When it was 11 v 11 we did create some chances, but we played too slowly, we played into Doncaster's hands. The sending-off will always make it difficult but even then, they only really had the two chances in terms of cutting us open. The lads showed great courage and effort in the second half but you need more than that to win matches."
October 30, 2017
Match highlights

Some match highlights of Saturday's game are currently available on the Sky Sports web site.
If you would like to view them, please click on the logo to the left.

October 30, 2017
Ferguson drops Mandeville
Manager Darren Ferguson made the unusual step of explaining why striker Liam Mandeville was left out of the squad for Saturday's match at Bury, which was due to the way the young striker reacted to his reaction to being left out of the starting line-up.
Ferguson explained: "His standards were nowhere near last week. I've got to make decisions and I've got to be ruthless at times. And his reaction to not playing was not great either. I don't think people should accept the situation that they're in one week and out the other. He knows himself that last week he was nowhere near the standards I expect from him. If I'm going to be a manager that trusts him to deliver performances then mentally he's got to be stronger."
He confirmed that Mandeville will play in the Checkatrade game against Scunthorpe United, as will Issam Ben Khemis and Alfie Beestin, with defender Mathieu Baudry also set to play as he regains match fitness, as Ferguson thinks he "still looks a bit rusty".
October 28, 2017
Bury v Rovers
Doncaster Rovers travel to face a struggling Bury side with the hope of getting some points on the board as a way of responding to last weekend's disappointing home defeat to Walsall.
They will have to do so without the services of Matty Blair, who has been given time off by the club, but they will have striker Andy Williams available, as he has recovered from a thigh injury that has kept him out of the last couple of matches.
Besides that, Rovers will be without Alfie May (groin), with Luke McCullough, Alex Kiwomya and Ross Etheridge, all of who have not played so far this season, still recovering from injury.
If anything, Bury are having an even worse season than Rovers so far, and they start the game in the relegation places of League One. They go into today's game on the back of three successive defeats.
They will be hoping that former Scunthorpe goalkeeper Joe Murphy is available after he missed their midweek game due to illness. They will be hoping that Jay O'Shea, Chris Humphrey and Rohan Ince all have had no adverse reaction after returning to action last week, and they should keep their places in the side.
However, they will be without Craig Jones (groin), Danny Mayor (pelvis) and Stephen Dawson (knee).
October 28, 2017
Rallying call from Ferguson
Darren Ferguson has called for a response from his players after last week's second half horror-show against Walsall.
He stressed that Rovers need to start picking up points, particularly against teams in the lower half of the table, and even though he is confident the players are good enough, they need to cut out the errors that are costing them dearly at the moment.
Speaking to DROS this week, he said: "Having a winning mentality is key for us, we need that to get us onto a good run of form and help us climb the league table. I know the effort and the commitment is there from the players, it’s a collective thing that everyone must be aware that the results haven’t been what we expect. Although we’re only a third of the way through the season it’s important that we start picking up points against the teams around us as that could prove to be key."
October 28, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this afternoon's away game at Bury are:
Referee: Andy Haines
Assistant referees: Mark Dwyer and Paul Hodskinson
Fourth Official: David Avent
October 28, 2017
Woods joins Partick
Former Doncaster Rovers midfielder Martin Woods has signed for Partick Thistle on a contract until the end of the season.
Woods, now aged 31, left Ross County at the end of last season at the end of his contract and has been training with the Partick squad ahead of last week's announcement. He had an unsuccessful trial with Motherwell in August, but has been able to sign as he is a free agent and is therefore not limited by joining a club during the 'transfer windows'.
Partick boss Alan Archibald commented: "Martin has trained with us a couple of days already this week and we bring him in to provide us with cover for that vital area in the middle of the pitch as we unfortunately lose Stuart Bannigan for four to six weeks while he recovers from the minor operation to clear up some minor issues in his knee. Martin has a wealth of experience and, while he is lacking in fitness, I expect him to be ready to play his part sooner rather than later. I trust you will all give him the welcome he deserves when he does make his debut."
October 27, 2017
Youth Team 4 Walsall 3
The youth team produced a stunning second half comeback to taste victory in last night's FA Youth Cup game against Walsall at the Keepmoat Stadium. Paul Stancliffe's team were 301 down midway through the second half, but goals from Lewis Scattergood, Matthew Overton and Myron Gibbons turned the game around and see Rovers go through to the second round.
Rovers initially took the lead on 25 minutes as a dangerous cross by Morgan James was deflected into his own net by Walsall defender Joe Brown, but that lead lasted only four minutes, with a near post cross in from the left wing evading goalkeeper James Leverton. That mistake affected Leverton's confidence and a second goal was conceded soon afterwards as he only parried a shot from Mason, with the rebound fired home by Flanagan.
Rovers started the second half intent on scoring the equaliser, but fell 3-1 behind on 56 minutes when they lost possession, allowing Candlin to score.
And then the Rovers comeback started, with a goal pulled back by Scattergood midway through the half, and then Rovers scored their second goal in a minute as a powerful shot from distance flew into the Walsall net. With the scores level, Rovers pushed forward in search of the winner, and Gibbons was unlucky not to score when he saw his shot saved. But Rovers were not to be denied, and the impressive Jacob Fletcher produced a defence-splitting pass to allow Gibbons to score what proved to be the winner in the 83rd minute.
Doncaster Rovers: Leverton, Tucker, Bingley, Amos, Horton (Townrow 63), Olaosun (Overton 63), Fletcher, James, Prior, Morris, Scattergood (Gibbons 69)
Substitutes not used: Ogley, Greaves
Walsall: Ganley, Little, Kendrick (Leak 20), Brown, Fisher, Cairns (Friel 85), Mason, Bates, O’Sullivan, Candlin, Flanagan (Nolan 61)
Substitutes not used: Dawe, Ruddock
October 27, 2017
Ebbsfleet tickets go on sale
Tickets for the FA Cup game at Ebbsfleet United went on sale to Silver Membership holders on Wednesday, 25th October. A whole raft of other 'holders' - Bronze, Academy, Red Squad, Donny Squad and DNA Card holders - can buy tickets from Saturday 28th October - presumably at a rate of one per card/member.
Remaining tickets will go on general sale from next Tuesday (31st October).
Rovers have received tickets for 36 seats and 759 terrace places for the game, which is to be played on Saturday, 4th November with a 3pm kick-off.
Ticket prices are the same for both the seats and standing areas, and are:
Adults £14 - Senior Citizens (60+) £11 - Juniors £5
Wheelchair users pay the relevant price with a carer admitted free of charge.
Please note that the on-line ticket buying facility will be unavailable on 1st November due to "maintenance".
October 27, 2017
Matty given time off
Rovers winger Matty Blair has been granted a "leave of absence" by the club after having discussions with Darren Ferguson.
Matty's brother, Ross, died in July and he has been struggling to recover from that, so Fergie has allowed him time away from the club to recover.
Speaking to the Doncaster Free Press, Ferguson said: "I’ve just given Matty some time off. He needs a break. Mentally, it’s been very difficult for him lately. That comes well before anything with football. I feel that the boy needs a break. It’s a complete break."
"He’s just found it difficult the lad, with everything that has gone on off the pitch, certain things. I had a good honest chat with him after the game against Portsmouth. It was the right reason. There are more important things and the boy’s welfare is more important than anything else."
Matty's absence is, by inference, open ended, but we look forward to seeing him back in action once he is ready to do so.
October 27, 2017
Cameron signs on for the Imps
Cameron Stewart, who played for Doncaster Rovers on loan from Ipswich Town in the 2015/16 season, has signed for League Two club Lincoln City on a short term contract which runs until January.
Stewart has been without a club since being released by Ipswich in the summer, but has been training with the Imps in recent weeks and is desperate to kick-start his career.
Lincoln boss Danny Cowley commented: "He's a good character and I'm sure he won't mind me saying he's lost his way just recently, but he's come in and re-found his love for the game. We've been working hard over the last couple of weeks to get him fit. We’ll have to work hard to continually improve his match fitness, but we’ve seen enough from his technical ability, attitude and application to know that he will add to our group. I think we can benefit from him not playing too much recently, because we’re getting a really hungry player who’s got real quality. He’s a creator, a goal scorer and a set-piece specialist. We’re excited to add him to our group."
Cameron added, in an interview on Lincoln's official web site: "I am delighted to join the club. It’s been a long road to getting back playing so I’m looking forward to it. Danny and Nicky (Cowley) have made me feel really welcome. It’s thanks to them two that I’m here. Hopefully I’ll have some more enjoyable times on the pitch here."
October 26, 2017
Strachan - young squad are progressing
Assistant manager Gavin Strachan can see that the Rovers squad is gradually progressing, and has reminded fans that the club have a lot of younger players in their first team squad. With that inexperience comes the potential for inconsistency, but Strachan knows that they all have the potential to progress.
Speaking to DROS recently, he said: "It’s easy to forget just how young a lot of our squad is, for any young player the aim is to achieve consistency and there are a few who are doing that. Young players want to come here because we have a manager who has proved in the past that he will give them a chance if they prove they’re good enough. We demand off the young players that they have to learn and become streetwise, they need to learn the tricks of the trade as that’s how you get the positive results."
October 26, 2017
Matthews set for longer stay at Plymouth
It looks as though former Rovers loan goalkeeper Remi Matthews may play a few more games for Plymouth following his "emergency loan" from Norwich City last week. Plymouth find that all of their professional goalkeepers are injured, so under Football League regulations, they are allowed to bring in a loan keeper outside of the transfer window. But the downside of that is that Plymouth will have to extend the loan on a week by week basis.
Plymouth boss Derek Adams commented: "I don't see any speed in any of the three goalkeepers coming back", but was full of praise for the performance of Matthews in his debut, telling BBC Radio Devon: "Remi was excellent. He's got very good hands, a good kicker of the ball, talks and is composed. I watched him last season when he was playing in the play-off final with Hamilton. I knew what I was going to get, I was very impressed with him that day and delighted to get him on board."
At the moment, Kyle Letheren, Luke McCormick and Robbert te Loeke are all injured, which allowed Argyle to bring in a loanee outside the transfer window.
October 26, 2017
Rowe - I can do better
A self-critical Tommy Rowe knows that he has not been consistent enough so far this season, and does not need anyone else to tell him that.
He told the Doncaster Free Press last week: "I’m my own biggest critic. It’s quite easy when me and the manager are talking. If he pulls me and I know I’ve not be hitting form. It’s been quite sporadic. In patches, good and bad. It’s just about getting the consistency now. I know I can perform a lot better than what I have been doing. If I’m coming off the pitch sulking, or just thinking about what I can do better, it’s for a reason because I expect a lot from myself."
As one of the team's more experienced players, Tommy knows that he has to do better, adding: "It’s important, with a young team, with the ones that are experienced – and I would include myself in that at my age and I’ve played a lot of games – I have to show that. The manager demands it and I demand it. The team needs every player playing at their top. “If we’re going to have any success this season, we need it from every player really. Individually, I know I can get to a lot higher level than what I’ve been playing at."
October 26, 2017
Glynn returns to work at Sunderland
We are pleased to see that Rovers legend Glynn Snodin, currently assistant manager at Championship club Sunderland, has returned to work after a spell off work due to ill health. Snodin was pictured earlier this week contributing to a training session with the first team squad. He was rushed to hospital following Sunderland's 1-1 draw with Hull last month, and was expected to be off work for a longer spell, but clearly his recovery has gone well.
October 25, 2017
Ferguson looks for reasons for horror show
Boss Darren Ferguson was at a loss as to why Doncaster Rovers suffered a sudden dip in performance standards for the last half hour of Saturday's game against Walsall, but insisted that the change of formation after his substitutions were nothing to do with it.
He told the Doncaster Star after the game: "You set a team up accordingly and looking at the players we had available I felt the shape of the team [was fine]. I honestly don’t think it had anything to do with tactics."
"We made the changes, we brought Coppinger and Kongolo on and went to the diamond but goals do change games. Clearly you had one performance that you [local media] felt was okay, I wasn’t too sure about that. It certainly wasn’t horrific. And then you lose a goal and it becomes horrific very, very quickly."
"So there’s reasons for that. On the back of a good win against Portsmouth and a win against Southend, that made it surprising. It was a hugely disappointing day and I haven’t seen a performance like that in the last thirty minutes for a while."
Speaking in a separate interview, defender Mathieu Baudry said that the players had accepted 'full responsibility' and that they had let their manager down.
He commented: "The boys have been talking in the dressing room, we take full responsibility for the result and that type of thing shouldn’t be happening. The manager is disappointed, we let him down because we didn’t show what we’re capable of and he always puts his trust in us. We really want to play well for the manager, who is the best manager I have worked with, and repay the faith he has in us."
"We had a lot of the ball but could not break them down so we exposed ourselves on the counter attack and they took advantage of that. We were on top without playing that well before the first goal but that’s not good enough to be able to beat teams in this division."
October 25, 2017
Youth cup tie details confirmed
Doncaster Rovers have confirmed that their FA Youth Cup first round tie against Walsall will be played at the Keepmoat Stadium on Thursday, 26th October with a 7.00pm kick-off.
Rovers will only be opening the West Stand, with admission prices being £3 for adults, £1 for concessions and £1 for 'season membership holders'.
The game will have extra time and penalties if necessary.
October 25, 2017
Mason nearing playing comeback
Former Doncaster Rovers loanee Ryan Mason is continuing to make progress towards a playing comeback, which will be a remarkable story considering he suffered a life-threatening injury in January when he needed emergency surgery on a fractured skull after a collision with Chelsea's Gary Cahill. That meant he had 14 metal plates inserted in his skull to repair the damage, and he has since been working on a lengthy rehab with the hope that he can resume his playing career.
Medical experts are yet to give him the green light to resume full contact training with the Hull City squad, but the club have been developing a bespoke protective head guard, probably similar to the one work in recent years by Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech, which would give him the extra protection needed.
City's vice-chairman Ehab Allan told the Hull Daily Mail: "Ryan is a fantastic player and an amazing character. I want to get him back playing and the objective for everyone is to get Ryan back involved. It was a very serious head injury obviously and I’m taking a personal interest in the development of some head gear that we’re hoping will assist in him coming back sooner rather than later. It’s bespoke to him. We’re literally having something made just for him, which is expensive, but we have to make an investment in Ryan coming back. I’d like him back and be able to put this all behind him."
The injury still has to fully heal, but Mason remains optimistic that he will make a full recovery, but knows he will have to wait for the would to "fuse fully" before he can go on to the next stage of his rehabilitation.
"here are obstacles, definitely," added Allam. "There are some very high hurdles to jump still and ultimately it’s not fully under our control. Ryan wants to play again and I’d love him to."
October 25, 2017
McCormack open to longer stay with Melbourne
Former Rovers loan striker Ross McCormack is enjoying getting back to playing regularly, even though he has had to travel around the world to do so.
He scored his first goal for Melbourne City at the weekend - a spectacular well struck free kick winning the game for them in the Melbourne derby against Victory.
With a long absence from regular first team action, along with harder pitches in Australia, he feels he is not at full fitness yet, but is confident of achieving that soon - and he is happy to consider extending his loan with Melbourne if given the opportunity.
In an interview after the weekend's game, he said: "I have scored a few in recent years, free kicks, but it was good [to get a goal. The longer it goes on [and] you are not scoring you start to put a bit more pressure on yourself so it was nice to see it go in. I have not had that many chances to score in the first two games really so that was more of a concern. You are never worried if you get a lot of chances and you are missing them because [you know that if] the chances keep coming you will take the next one. It was more frustrating that there were not more chances in the first couple of games."
He added: "Since I have come to this club all the lads, coaching staff have been different class. I just want to put a smile back on my face really. It's been a difficult last year since I went to Aston Villa. I have enjoyed it, but it's been tough. With the time difference, the pitches are a lot harder out here and I have had little Achilles problems. It's just good to be on the football pitch again. The first game here was my first start in 7½ months. I am not thinking about going back to Aston Villa just yet. There's no secret it's not worked out there and we will see if there's anything that can be done, if I can stay here or go somewhere else on loan to play some more games, or leave permanently. I am not sure what's going to happen."
October 24, 2017
Ferguson targets "consolidation"
Rovers boss Darren Ferguson has revealed to the Doncaster Star what he rates the club's objective for this season is, although the longer term objectives of the club also have to be borne in mind.
Ahead of the League Cup game at Arsenal, he told a national newspaper that the club were wanting to "consolidate" after getting promotion - but Ferguson's definition of 'consolidation' doesn't necessarily equate to what others think of the term.
He explained: "What I mean by that is we all hope for success this season, as every club does. But I think we’ve got to be more realistic than that. I think this is a longer term project. I think for a lot of the young players in the squad a year at this level won’t do them any harm, that’s sort of what I’m getting at."
"Don’t get me wrong, we want to be successful and I’m not going to be satisfied if we finish in a certain part of the league. But I think it’s important that everyone is aware that this is a longer term thing. Certainly I wasn’t thinking that we’ll just go back-to-back and smash the league. In saying that, it is a league where you go on a run and things change very, very quickly. Anyone that can string a run of three or four wins together will move right up the league. I think we’re capable of doing that, but we’ve got to show that."
"When I say ‘consolidation’ it’s more of a realistic view on what we’re trying to do at the club. It’s longer term as opposed to a short term fix. And I think that’s happened too often, that people have focused on the short term. You have to be successful in the short term but I feel, and certainly the directors and the chairman feel, that this perhaps is a longer term thing."
October 24, 2017
Furman wants to return to England
Former Rovers midfielder Dean Furman returned back to his homeland in South Africa after finishing playing at the Keepmoat Stadium two years ago, and while he has been enjoying the experience, he has an ambition of finishing off his playing career in England.
After his current club, SuperSport United, won the MTN8 Cup last weekend, he said: “I’m loving being back in South Africa, but my current contract finishes at the end of the season. I’m planning to sign a extension for another year but am keen to return to the UK afterwards."
But before that, Furman has the goal of helping the South African national team qualify for next year's World Cup. He added: "We must beat Senegal home and away. We have the quality to win both matches and although it looks like Sadio Mane will miss out through injury, we know they have some excellent players. It’s been an amazing experience playing in the stadiums used for the World Cup here and my dream of reaching the finals is still alive."
October 24, 2017
Bywater signs on for more at Brewers
Ex-Rovers goalkeeper has signed an extension to his contract at Burton United after impressing boss Nigel Clough this season.
Bywater joined Burton in January 2016 and played a major part of keeping the club in the Championship by playing in the last six games of last season.
He only signed a 12 month extension in June 2017, but has been rewarded with a new deal that keeps him at the club until the summer of 2019.
October 24, 2017
Dino helps out at Nuneaton
Nuneaton Town have reacted to the unexpected resignation of their manager, Tommy Wright (not the former Rovers winger), by placing assistant boss Jon Ashton in temporary charge, and have brought in former Rovers striker Dino Maamria, an experienced non-league manager,to assist him.
Wright initially turned down Darlington's offer early last week, only to have a change of heart last Friday. Darlington are to pay Wright's notice period and also compensation to secure the signature of the 33 year old. Nuneaton have spoken of their disappointment that Darlington made no contact with them about wanting to talk to Wright, issuing a stinging criticism of Darlington in their announcement of Wright's departure.
Maamria has been manager at Stevenage twice, Southport (both as manager and player on four different occasions), and was also assistant to Graham Westley at Preston North End and Newport County.
October 24, 2017
Voting results v Walsall
As happens on so many occasions, a combination of a disappointing result and/or performance leads to a wide range of who supporters think was the "Man of the Match", with a consequent relatively even spread of votes. That happened again this time for Saturday's home defeat against Walsall - we received nominations for six different players.
Those receiving the most votes were as follows:
1= Andy Butler, Tommy Rowe (23.08% each)
3= Harry Toffolo, Mathieu Baudry (15.38% each)
Thank you to everyone who took the time to place their votes. The next voting will open after this weekend's game away at Bury.
October 23, 2017
McIndoe - says sorry in new book
Former Rovers winger Michael McIndoe, who has attracted attention for all the wrong reasons over the last few years, is trying to put the record straight in his new autobiography, which has just been released. The book, entitled "Wilding" sees McIndoe admit that shareholders were left out of pocket when a London night club he was launching flopped.
On that, he said in the book: "To those I borrowed money from but didn’t pay back in full, I humbly apologise. People who know me well know that I’ve always been meticulous about paying back any money I’ve borrowed. I desperately wanted the club to be the success we thought it would be. There were many unforeseen circumstances which I could never have planned for. I’m truly gutted things didn’t work out."
In 2014 he was declared bankrupt and in documents at bankruptcy hearings it was revealed he owed 17 men nearly £3.5 million – including a string of Wolves players. Scotland Yard fraud detectives are currently investigating the alleged failed investment scheme and have interviewed him under caution.
In an interview with ITV News, McIndoe claimed: "I have never run any kind of investment scheme or Ponzi scheme." However, McIndoe did admit he had taken some money from friends in football, explaining: "They were all personal loans, and 80 per cent of them were done through lawyers," he said.
The book is available for purchase in both print and Kindle versions.
October 23, 2017
Armstrong turns down Darlington
Ex-Rovers striker Alun Armstrong has turned down the chance to be Darlington's next manager after lengthy discussions held with the Quakers' board over last weekend.
His current club, Blyth Spartans, issued a statement confirming their manager was staying at the club, with implied criticism as to the way an approach was made. A statement said: "Chairman Tony Platten confirmed that he had been contacted by a local club but advised them that Alun had an existing contract of employment. In football there are rules and regulations regarding players and managers contracts but with modern communication devices it is almost impossible to stop contact and speculation."
Armstrong added: "I have a contract of employment with the club that includes the option for a further 12 months The management committee, finances, stability and most importantly Croft Park’s readiness for full Conference football were all part of my reason for coming to Blyth in the first place. The team is performing excellently in the League and my ambition is to take the club forward."
October 23, 2017
Ferguson wants more vocal players
Part of the problem that Doncaster Rovers have had so far this season is that there are not enough vocal players out on the pitch that are willing to be critical of each other if things go wrong.
Speaking ahead of the Portsmouth game, he said: "They’ve got to be aware that they have responsibilities while the game’s going on as well. As a manager you’re responsible for a lot, which is absolutely correct. But when certain things are happening in games they need to have responsibility for that. And it’s not a case of ‘us and them’. It’s never going to be like that here. They are aware of it as well and it is something we’ve spoken about. I feel if we can get a bit more of that it will help us."
"It’s a really rare thing in modern football having players like when I played. I was horrible to play with, I’ve got to be honest, but I did it for the right reasons. A good example would be Roy Keane. He was always on at his players, but nothing personal. It can just be a simple message like ‘that’s not good enough’, ‘you’re better than that’, just to make sure the standards remain the same - that’s all I’m asking of them. We have got some good talkers but I think at times everyone has to do it. That’s all I’m saying."
The return of Mathieu Baudry may help this - in a separate interview with the Free Press, he said: "I feel he gives you that confidence. And he’s got a good character too. He will have a go at people, and he will speak and he will shout and he will talk."
October 23, 2017
McSporran gets new assistant
Jermaine McSporran, the former Rovers striker, has a new assistant manager at Kidlington. One of their former players, Henry Owen, has become joint assistant manager at the club after being forced to retire from playing due to an ongoing knee problem.
McSporran first joined Kidlington back in 2006, but rejoined the club in 2008 after a brief spell at Banbury United.He played for Rovers between 2004 and 2006.
October 22, 2017
Rovers 0 Walsall 3
Where did it all go wrong? Recent results suggested that Doncaster Rovers had found their feet in League One after an indifferent start to the season, but everything seemed to unravel yesterday afternoon as Rovers slumped to a 3-0 home defeat against Walsall.
The strange thing is that for an hour of the game, Rovers were the only team that looked likely to win the match, and they dominated possession. Midfield tended to be overpopulated and the ball pinged about with neither set of players able to take the time to place their passes.
Ben Whiteman missed a decent chance, and Tommy Rowe hit the post, with John Marquis shooting wide when attempting to put the rebound into the far corner
Rovers made a double substitution on 56 minutes, and for a while it looked like the ploy would be the key to enable Rovers to win the points. With the introduction of Coppinger and Kongolo in place of Mandeville and Baudry, there seemed to be more space as Rovers used the full width of the field better.
And then everything went wrong. Three horrendous examples of defending gave the visitors their goals - Joe Wright was caught in possession to give Oztumer a clear shot at goal - and the same player found plenty of space to double the lead four minutes later. A long clearance say Bakayoko latch on to the ball as the Rovers defence gaped open down the middle of the pitch, with Morris finishing with ease past Ian Lawlor, who barely had a save to make, and was left so exposed by the Rovers defence that he was hardly to blame for the goals.
So where do we go from here? No doubt the 'doom and gloom' merchants will have a field day, which is hardly merited on recent performances. But it does show some inherent weaknesses in the way the Rovers side play - whether that be tactical, coaching or a lack of a certain type of player is for the coaching staff to work out. A tough week at the training ground lies ahead as Darren Ferguson and his coaching staff hope to put things right in time for next weekend.
October 22, 2017
What the managers said
A shocked and angry Darren Ferguson answered questions from the press after yesterday's home defeat at the hands of Walsall, admitting that he was totally unprepared for such a substandard display.
Speaking to BBC Radio Sheffield after the game, he said: "It was an incredibly disappointing performance and a terrible result, a disappointing day. They say nothing much surprises you in football but that certainly did. I didn't see that coming. We had a few shots and a bit of the ball but overall I thought it was a real lifeless performance from us."
"The first goal was a horrendous mistake and after that we just went. It would have baffled anyone that has watched us all season, that sort of performance. It's the worst performance of the season, the worst result of the season. Given the opportunity we felt we had to get back-to-back wins, three successive home wins - I don't know where that came from. I've got to find answers to it. I feel the fans have stuck by us in the main because they've seen performances that have probably deserved more but not today."
Fans were surprised when Ferguson sat in the dugout for the second half instead of being on the touchline urging his players on. Ferguson explained: "I'd been shouting and bawling and trying to inject energy into them that I felt I needed to. I felt at that point it wasn't working, so I sat down."
Of the team changes, he added: "You go with making decisions, sometimes you get them right, sometimes you're wrong. It was a hard one with James Coppinger because, particularly at home, I feel he's really effective for us. But particularly with Liam scoring, as we've seen before he can go on a wee run and get some goals. But he never really had half a chance."
Walsall boss Jon Whitney praised the performance of his 'outstanding' players, who staged a smash and grab raid to take all three points.
He told the club's official web site: "You have got to be clinical away from home. You’ve got to handle the pressure they put you under and I thought we handled the elements better than them. It’s always difficult facing a strong wild, psychologically as well. It makes it difficult to get out of your own half but we handled it well in the first half. We were a little bit lucky when they hit the post but we dug in."
"The energy from the lads, and the defensive energy from Amadou Bakayoko especially, was pleasing. Oztumer got his rewards because he did a job defensively for the team. Tyler [Roberts] led the line really well and Ama’s energy on the left was outstanding. They didn’t really look like getting a goal second half - I thought it was quite comfortable. It was a good away performance and that’s what you want to do – soak up some pressure, hit them on the counter attack and score three excellent team goals. All the credit goes to the players – I’m proud of them. They were outstanding today."
October 22, 2017
Match highlights

Brief highlights of yesterday's home game against Walsall are now available on the Sky Sports web site.
To view them, please click on their logo to the left.

October 22, 2017
Port Vale 2 Rovers Development XI 0
Rovers may have lost the game, but Development manager John Schofield was impressed with the way his players coped against an experienced Port Vale side.
Port Vale got their first goal on 19 minutes, with the lead doubled three minutes after the break.
After the game, Schofield commented: "We played a very experienced side no doubt about it, there were players on that pitch who have played 300 or more games in the Football League. My lads stuck to their task and, as I have said previously, it is a good learning cure for the players. We created three or four decent opportunities and just couldn’t take them, but I’m very pleased overall."
He added: "It has been an amazing month for the club, the academy and the youth policy. Jacob made his first team debut and has been involved a lot of over the past few weeks which is fantastic. Danny Amos, who I thought was excellent, has played for Northern Ireland, scored on his debut and got the winner against Hartlepool on Saturday, so it’s been a great start to the season for him."
Port Vale; Ryan Boot, Lawrie Wilson, Anthony de Freitas, Antony Kay, Joe Davis, Adam Yates, Jack Stobbs, Harry Middleton, Tyrone Barnett, Dan Turner, Cristian Montano (Billy Reeves 46).
Unused substitutes: Dequan Crockwell, Josh Ryder, Matty Ward, Harry Benns
Doncaster Rovers: Marko Marosi, Jordan Tucker (Cameron Foulkes 58), Cody Prior, Tyler Garrett, Keegan Townrow, Danny Amos, Morgan James, Jacob Fletcher (Anthony Greaves 75), James Morris (Cameron Barnett 83), Issam Ben-Khemis, Matthew Overton (Myron Gibbons 68)
Unused substitute: Louis Jones
October 22, 2017
Matthews joins Plymouth
It's only fairly recently that former Rovers loan goalkeeper Kyle Letheren joined Plymouth Argyle owing to all their first team squad goalkeeper being injured - and then the injury jinx struck, with Letheren injuring his thigh on Tuesday evening against Blackburn Rovers, with teenage keeper Michael Cooper coming on as substitute.
With all the club's keepers still injured, Plymouth were given sanction to sign another goalkeeper on loan, and they moved quickly to sign another former Rovers loan keeper - Remi Matthews on a week's loan from Norwich City and he played superbly yesterday as Plymouth win 1-0 away at AFC Wimbledon.
Matthews is yet to make his first team debut for Norwich, but has had loan spells at Burton Albion and Rovers last season, and also was on a season-long loan at SPL club Hamilton Academical last season.
October 22, 2017
Voting results v Portsmouth
We received votes for six different players for Tuesday's home game against Portsmouth. Two players came ahead of the rest, which were:
1 Tommy Rowe (45.45%)
2 Joe Wright (18.18%)
The others to receive nominations were Andy Butler, Ian Lawlor, Rodney Kongolo and Mathieu Baudry.
We thank everyone for taking part in the voting, with all votes going forward to the "Player of the Season" rankings.
October 21, 2017
Andy Liney
We are greatly saddened to hear of the recent death of Andy Liney in a road accident.
He was involved in a collision with a stationary van whilst out cycling near his home in the Retford area on September 19th, and taken to Bassetlaw Hospital in a critical condition, where he died six days later.
Andy was an key figure in helping Rovers move to the new stadium and was involved in helping the club in numerous ways when the club were struggling in the Conference.
Tributes were led by former Rovers chairman John Ryan, who wrote: "So sorry to hear of the death of Andy Liney. He helped Rovers in so many ways when we were at our lowest ebb. He was a great guy who helped us achieve so much including the Keepmoat Stadium. So sad to see both Andy and Dick (Watson) pass away in such a short time R.I.P."
Andy was instrumental in the setting up of the Viking Supporters Co-operative, which was a conduit for fund raising for the club on many occasions, including the "Coin Trail" - an appeal to raise enough money to figuratively lay a trail of coins from Belle Vue to the new stadium.
It is the likes of Andy that have helped the club transform into what it is today, and we hope that the club will pay a suitable tribute in due course.
We wish Pat and his family our deepest condolences at what must be a distressing time.
October 21, 2017
Rovers v Walsall
Darren Ferguson could have three players back for this afternoon's home game against Walsall after having to name a side with eight first team players missing on Tuesday evening.
John Marquis will be available after serving a one match ban due to accumulating five bookings so far this season, with striker Andy Williams also in with a chance of being fit for selection after injury.
Key midfielder James Coppinger faces a late fitness test ahead of today's game to see whether he has sufficiently recovered from a calf injury that forced him to miss Tuesday's game.
Still missing will be Ross Etheridge, Danny Andrew, Alex Kiwomya and Luke McCullough, along with Alfie May, who had a groin operation during the week.
Walsall could have Simeon Jackson back after making a return to action in their Walsall Senior Cup game during the week. Zeli Ismail could also return after suffering from illness that meant he missed last weekend's game and could only be a substitute during the week against MK Dons. Midfielder Florent Cuvelier should also keep his place after missing five weeks with a hamstring injury, as should skipper Adam Chambers.
October 21, 2017
Ferguson keen to keep winning run going
History suggests that Rovers will struggle to beat Walsall this afternoon, not having won a home game against the Saddlers since the Belle Vue days, but Darren Ferguson is looking forward and is intent in continuing the gradually improving home record.
He told the Yorkshire Post: "It is back-to-back wins at home and I have said to the players to focus on Saturday. If we can get another win, that is three wins out of four and three home wins on the bounce and it will be very pleasing if we can do that. I have put it to them to start thinking about Saturday and it would be the first back-to-back league wins we have had (this season) and it is an important game. They know that and we will certainly have the confidence going into that."
October 21, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this afternoon's home game against Walsall are:
Referee: Kevin Johnson
Assistant referees: Graeme Fyvie and Declan Ford
Fourth Official: Ian Smedley
October 21, 2017
FA Cup details confirmed
The first round FA Cup tie at Ebbsfleet United has been confirmed for 3pm on Saturday, 4th November. Ebbsfleet have announced that the game will be all-ticket, although Rovers have not yet confirmed when tickets for away fans will go on sale.
October 21, 2017
Cut price offer for Walsall game
Doncaster Rovers have announced that Silver Membership holders will be able to bring "a friend" to this afternoon's home game against Walsall for the reduced price of £12. These tickets are obtainable from the Keepmoat Stadium's ticket office, but you need to present Silver Membership voucher A to take advantage of the offer.
The offer applies to Category A and B seating areas of the stadium, and is limited to one "friend" per Silver Membership voucher.
October 18, 2017
Rovers 2 Portsmouth 1
As expected, Rovers had only one striker to name in their starting line-up for Tuesday's home game against Portsmouth, with Liam Mandeville ploughing a lone furrow up front, due to injuries to Alfie May and Andy Williams, and a one match suspension for John Marquis.
In addition, James Coppinger was absent after suffering a calf injury early in the Charlton game, so it gave Darren Ferguson the chance to shuffle his starting line-up, which enabled him to give defender Mathieu Baudry his first start of the season.
Despite these selection difficulties, Rovers made a superb start to the game, and were two goals up within the first five minutes. An attack down the left by Tommy Rowe fed the ball through to Rodney Kongolo, whose first time cross was side-footed home by Liam Mandeville from six yards out. The lead was doubled just two minutes later when Rovers won a corner on the left. The powerfully taken corner past the far post was headed home by Tommy Rowe, although the attempt of defender Christian Burgess took the ball in the net when he was trying to keep the ball out.
Rovers were playing well, and seemed to be first to the ball, but failed to increase the goals tally further.
Portsmouth made a double substitution at half time and that effectively changed the nature of the game, giving the visitors much more influence on the game. They started to win all the 50-50 balls and became much more of a threat. They hit the woodwork early in the second half when a free kick flew past the wall and had Ian Lawlor well beaten - thankfully the ball bounced out and was cleared. Portsmouth scored in somewhat bizarre circumstances that Lawlor will want to forget. A back pass by Baudry was missed by Lawlor as he tried to kick the ball clear, and a second attempt to kick the ball clear came too late as the ball went over the line.
You would have thought that any chance that Portsmouth had of getting something out of the game disappeared in the 68th minute when Donohue was shown a red card for kicking out at Niall Mason, with the incident spotted by the fourth official only a few feet away. But Rovers never really seemed to gain an advantage of being a man up, and Ian Lawlor was called upon to made a superb save in injury time to keep out a header by Jamal Lowe and enable Rovers to take all three points.
But a win's a win, and against one of the potentially toughest opponents, that will do nicely.
October 18, 2017
What the managers said
A pleased Darren Ferguson gave his thoughts on the Portsmouth match after the game, and commented: "It’s a big three points it is a very important victory for us, and the early start gave us a great platform to go forward. It’s a good win and I’m pleased for the players, they’ve really dug in and caused them all sorts of problems. I was very happy with the first half and, after their goal, we had to change shape because they were getting too much possession so I had to do something to stop that. But, in the end, I think we deserved the victory."
He was pleased with the performance of Mathieu Baudry in his first game since recovering from injury, and added: "Baudry has a bit more experience and he can bring the ball out of the defence very well which we know about, and I thought he did that really well, it wasn’t a gamble playing him and he was ready and he played well in the system we had."
"The world-class save from Ian Lawlor at the end sums up the determination that we had to get the result and that is what you need at times to get over the line and it might not necessarily be pretty football, we had the belief and we got in early doors."
Portsmouth boss Kenny Jackett was not happy with the way his players started the game, saying: "Doncaster had three clear-cut chances in the first six minutes of the game and took two of them. We’ve gone away to Northampton and Scunthorpe recently, and given ourselves a mountain to climb – and we did the same again. For the first goal, Tommy Rowe’s gone inside two of our players and we know he’s capable of that, so defensively it was poor. There was some misfortune about the second one, but we’ve just given them too many opportunities."
"We’re the away side and we need to start strong to make sure that we stay in the game, but instead Doncaster found themselves in pole position. There were some key moments after that, with Christian’s header cleared off the line and Conor Chaplin had a free-kick that hit the woodwork. We kept battling away, got one back and even after going down to 10 men we had a good chance through Jamal Lowe. But we shouldn’t be putting ourselves into the position where we’re giving ourselves those problems and we’ve done it too many times."
"I can’t say that we were necessarily outclassed – we just got it wrong in the opening stages and that cost us."
Jackett had no complaints about the sending off of Donohue with twenty minutes to go, adding: "He’s kicked out at the player and you just can’t do that. He’s given the referee the opportunity to send him off. Dion has to take the responsibility for his actions. I’ve spoken to him and told him exactly that. We can talk about the referee or their bench, but if you kick out – even if it was just a small flick – you open yourself up to get a red card."
October 18, 2017
Rovers get non-league opponents in cup draw
Doncaster Rovers have been drawn away to National League side Ebbsfleet United in the First Round of this year's FA Cup. The draw was made earlier this week, although Rovers' opponents were initially uncertain, with Ebbsfleet having to play a replay against East Thurrock on Tuesday evening, which they won 3-0.
Ebbsfleet scored twice in three minutes to effectively decide the tie in their fourth qualifying round replay, which came after a goalless first match in Essex on Saturday.
The ties for the first round will be played over the weekend of November 3rd to 6th.
October 18, 2017
Wellens gets the Oldham job
Former Rovers captain and midfielder Richie Wellens has been appointed as manager at League One club Oldham Athletic after going undefeated in an impressive four wins in his five matches as caretaker manager since taking over from John Sheridan when the club were bottom of League One.
Wellens had been on the coaching staff at Boundary Park before Sheridan's departure, and has now been given a two year contract as boss.
Chairman Simon Corney told the BBC: "What started out to be a very hard decision ended up being an easy one. Perhaps most telling was my conversation with Paul Scholes a few weeks ago, who told me that to look any further than Richie would be crazy."
Wellens added: "I would like Paul to be involved in the club somehow. He's a massive name and an Oldham supporter so if he would like to be involved, you'd be silly not to invite him in and see what he has to say and if he can help on the football side of things."
Scholes is part owner of FC United of Manchester, which may prove a problem in him getting involved in anything at Oldham. Scholes was linked with the managerial vacancy before Wellens was given the job.
October 17, 2017
Rovers v Portsmouth
Doncaster Rovers have just one senior striker available for this evening's home game against Portsmouth, with Liam Mandeville set to be tasked with leading the line. With John Marquis suspended after being booked at the weekend, along with Andy Williams and Alfie May on the injured list, Mandeville is the only option, although others may be asked to take a more advanced role when the opportunity arises. Alfie Beestin only returned from injury to play in last week's Development XI game, so is unlikely to start, although he could be handed a place on the bench.
Rovers also have a major doubt over skipper James Coppinger, who limped off after just a few minutes of Saturday's game at Charlton with a calf injury.
Mathieu Baudry is fit and available for selection, although Darren Ferguson opted to leave him out of the match day squad last Saturday. However, with other likely absences, it could give the Rovers boss the opportunity to give Baudry his first game of the season, although whether he plays the full 90 minutes must be in doubt.
Apart from that, the injury situation remains unchanged, with Ross Etheridge, Luke McCullough and Alex Kiwomya still sidelined.
Portsmouth are set to welcome striker Conor Chaplin back into the squad this evening after he has recovered from a hamstring injury, which has kept him out for three weeks. Defender Drew Talbot will miss out after picking up a groin injury at the weekend.
Former Rovers loan striker Milan Lalkovic could return to the squad after recovering from injury, but boss Kenny Jacket will continue to be without Brett Pittman, who is out with a long term injury after having surgery on his knee.
October 17, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials for this evening's home game against Portsmouth will be:
Referee: Martin Coy
Assistant referees: Darren Strain and Craig Taylor
Fourth official: Michael Salisbury
October 17, 2017
Alfie's injury blow
Rovers striker Alfie May is to have an operation on a groin injury after it got worse during Saturday's away game at Charlton Athletic which led to his substitution.
Boss Darren Ferguson revealed in an interview with DROS: "May is having surgery on Wednesday which will keep him out for at least of eight weeks, that’s a massive blow for the team and for Alfie himself. We hoped to manage the injury in a way which wouldn’t have involved an operation, but he couldn’t even sprint at one stage against Charlton so we knew we had to act."
The hope will be that May will be fit to return for the busy Christmas period, which should be possible if his recovery goes to schedule.
October 17, 2017
Mason - Rovers have had to learn quickly
Niall Mason has admitted that the Doncaster Rovers players have noticed the difference in styles and standards between last season in League Two, and this season in League One.
Rovers have struggled to score goals at times; something that is not often said about a team managed by Darren Ferguson, but Niall confirming that they have been punished for their mistakes.
Speaking to the Doncaster Star, he said: "There’s definitely a difference. I think we’ve found that each mistake we’ve made, we’ve been punished for it. And when we don’t take our chances you may not get another chance, whereas in League Two I felt we did miss a few chances but we’d always get one or two more and that would win us the game. Or if we conceded one or two we’d go on and win the game 4-2 or 5-2 or something like that. I think that’s the difference."
He continued: "There’s finer margins in League One and you can see that as you go up the leagues it becomes more pronounced. We can adapt to that. We’ve learned a lot from the opening games of the season. I don’t think anyone can doubt the performances. It has been a lack of concentration for a minute or two, where we let sides back into the game or we don’t finish a chance, and then they go and get one chance and score. I feel like we’ve limited teams a lot this season in terms of chances but the one mistake we do make, it has cost us."
October 16, 2017
Charlton Athletic 1 Rovers 0
Darren Ferguson kept an unchanged side from last weekend's win over Southend United for Saturday's game at Charlton Athletic, but this time they failed to convert possession into goals.
The fact that the referee had a nightmare of a game in all sorts of ways didn't help, and the early injury to James Coppinger, who had to leave the field of play after just seven minutes with a calf injury, did not improve things.
Rovers went behind only a minute later when a shot by Fosu caught Lawlor unawares with the ball going into the net at the near post.
The referee missed a blatant penalty for Rovers at a time which would have put Rovers back into the game - but early in the second half, the referee had to be replaced after clattering in to Charlton's Magennis, which left him flat on the ground and needing treatment from the Charlton medical staff. A totally accidental freak incident with no blame on the player, but it resulted in the referee being replaced after a seven minute delay.
Rovers created enough chances, but failed to break through, with both sides having chances in the closing quarter of the game.
October 16, 2017
What the managers said
To say that Darren Ferguson was unhappy with Saturday's defeat at Charlton Athletic is not overstating the situation, with the criticism of the team's performance in the first half particularly stinging.
Speaking after the game, Ferguson said: "It's an unacceptable result. It's a terrible result. The first half performance was no where near good enough, no where near the required standard. We lost a poor goal. "The first half performance was the problem. It cost us the game. It wasn't quick enough, the tempo wasn't there. Again we're saying the same things - how have we lost that game when we're on top in the second half. But we have lost it and it's a hugely disappointing result."
Of the goal conceded, he added: "I'm not going to criticise my players in public individually so you're going to have to work that out for yourselves. But it's a clear mistake by someone. If we played in the first half like we did in the second then we win the game. You lose a poor goal and then it's too slow. Again, I've had to really get into them at half time. We were so much better in the second half, the reaction in that half was brilliant but we were always chasing the game."
"We’ve played 13 games and we’ve only lost one game by a couple of goals or more, we had a couple of good chances in the game. We spoke a lot midweek about what we wanted to do against them and we did that, but we have a big week coming up. We have Portsmouth on Tuesday night, it’s a good thing to have a game straight after a loss and I need a reaction. We will have three changes, Marquis is suspended, Copps and May are out through injuries."
Charlton boss Karl Robinson was pleased with the way his side played, commenting "On the counter attack, we looked bright and we could have scored one or two more. I saw a real desire, a dedication and application towards the cause. We all know we weren’t at our best and when you’re not you have to call on your heart, your desire and work ethic. These are the things that every fan asks for. We stuck to the task, we gave it our all and that is all I and the fans can ask for. The ovation from the supporters at the end was great and that is what this club needs; a team that is willing to go to the wire when it’s not playing well. We knew how to win today and I was very pleased with that."
October 16, 2017
George Mansell
We are saddened to learn of the death of former Doncaster Rovers player George Mansell earlier this month at the age of 74.
He joined Rovers in 1962 and played for their junior teams, but his only first team appearance followed on 17th November 1962 when he played as centre forward in the 5-1 defeat at Darlington.
He stayed with the club until 1964 when he joined Hinckley United.
George returned to the Doncaster area to become involved in local football in the Bentley and Arksey areas.
We send our condolences to his friends and family at this sad time.
October 16, 2017
Match highlights

Sky Sports have brief match highlights of Saturday's game against Charlton Athletic available on their web site.
If you would like to view them, please click on the logo to the left.

October 16, 2017
Travel information to Bury
The Doncaster Rovers Supporters Club are running coaches to the away game at Bury, which is on Saturday, 28th October.
They will leave Retford at 10.45am, Harworth 11.05am, Bawtry 11.00am, Rossington Styrrup 11.00pm, 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.
October 16, 2017
Travel information to Exeter
The Doncaster Rovers Supporters Club are running coaches to the away game at Charlton Athletic, which is on Saturday, 14th October.
They will leave Retford at 8.30am, Harworth 8.35am, Bawtry 8.45am, Rossington Styrrup 8.45pm, 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 £22 - Concessions £20
Non-members: Adults £24 - Concessions £22
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 next Wednesday.
October 14, 2017
Charlton Athletic v Rovers
Doncaster Rovers could welcome Mathieu Baudry back into the squad for this afternoon's away game at Charlton Athletic, after he successfully returned to action this week in a Development XI game. He is unlikely to play the full 90 minutes, which gives Darren Ferguson the choice of including Baudry in the starting eleven, or introducing him as a substitute. If Ferguson deems him not quite ready, next Tuesday's home game against Portsmouth is another option.
Striker Andy Williams is still unavailable due to a thigh injury that kept him out of the side for last weekend's win over Southend, while Alex Kiwomya, Luke McCullough, Ross Etheridge and Danny Andrew all continue their recoveries from injury.
After last weekend's victory, we don't expect the Rovers boss to make many changes to the side.
Charlton have Chris Solly returning after missing their victory over Fleetwood, and they have a number available following international duty - Josh Magennis, Jay Dasilva and Ezri Konsa. Ben Reeves and Mark Marshall are edging towards match fitness but are not expected to be in the starting side, and may have to settle for places on the bench. Defender Lewis Page is close to returning to the side, but will feature in next week's Development Squad game before being considered. Billy Clarke should be fit, despite picking up a knock at Fleetwood.
October 14, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this afternoon's away game at Charlton Athletic are:
Referee: Robert Lewis
Assistant referees: Andrew Aylott and Justin Amey
Fourth official: Craig Hicks
October 14, 2017
Brabin moves to Vale Park
Former Doncaster Rovers midfielder Gary Brabin has been appointed as part of the first team coaching staff at Port Vale following the arrival of new manager Neil Aspin.
Also joining is Lee Nogan, who was Aspin's assistant at Halifax and Gateshead, so his arrival was fairly predictable, but Brabin has not previously worked with the new manager. He is, however, an experienced manager who took Luton and Cambridge to the Conference play-offs, and has also been manager at Tranmere Rovers and Southport.
October 14, 2017
Kilgallon agrees new Bantams contract
Ex-Rovers loan defender Matthew Kilgallon has agreed an extension to his contract at Bradford City. He has been at the Bantams for just over a year, and was in the last 12 months of his contract, but the news now means that he will remain at the club until the summer of 2019.
His partnership with Nathaniel Knight-Percival has seen City keep four clean sheets in their opening 12 fixtures, and they are currently third in the League One table.
The City boss said: "Prior to the closure of the summer transfer, there was actually some interest in Killa from a team abroad. It would have been a big offer for him in terms of finances but Matt wanted to stay. The way he has been playing this season and the loyalty he has shown to the club, Matt deserves this new contract. He is a good influence in the dressing room.
October 13, 2017
Bury ticket information
Tickets for the forthcoming away game at Bury are now on sale from the ticket office at the Keepmoat Stadium.
Rovers have received an allocation of 1,060 tickets for the game, which is on Saturday, 28th October with the usual 3pm kick-off.
Tickets are presently on sale to Silver Membership holders, and go on sale to Bronze, Academy, Red Squad and Donny Squad members from next Monday. Any tickets remaining unsold will go on general sale from Monday, 23rd October.
Ticket prices, which are for unreserved seating in the East Stand, are as follows:
Adult £20 - Senior Citizens (65+) £14 - Young adults (18.22) £14 - Juniors (12-17) £10 - Juniors (5-11) £5 - Under 5's free - Wheelchair & ambulant disabled £14
October 13, 2017
Quinn back after heart scare
Former Doncaster Rovers defender Paul Quinn has resumed training with Dundee United after being a poisoned tooth led to an abnormal heart rate after some of the poison got into his system.
Scans have not shown up anything amiss and the former Ross County defender has been given the all-clear to train, although the club's own medical staff will decide when he is fit enough to return to first team action.
October 13, 2017
Chimbonda signs for Washington
Former French international Pascal Chimbonda has signed for non-league club Washington. He last played for French club AC Arles-Avignon between 2014 and 2015, but has now returned to play in England. He is no stranger to the north east of England, having played for Sunderland earlier in his career, and played for Doncaster Rovers in October 2011 and played 16 games during the rest of the season.
Washington's head coach, James Clark, commented: "To bring somebody of Pascal's calibre is brilliant for the club, the players, staff and town. It came about through a third-party contact. We’ve had associates that we’ve known for a long time so when the opportunity came up to sign Pascal it was something I couldn’t turn down. Since the start with the new board they’ve looked to help me as much as possible and support everything I’ve wanted to do and this really is a statement of intent for the league from Washington. He has come in to be a player and he’s come in to step up the level as a player for the squad and as he’s stated he can help those players, the younger ones that we do have in the squad, to grow."
Chimbonda added: "I’m very happy to be here and I’m just looking forward to playing. I spoke with the manager and we had a good chat and we started from there. I think the team need more character, like when you’re winning one-nil and there’s three or four minutes of extra time you have to be solid and don’t concede a goal. I think the more you play games the more confidence is coming and the players are more focused on the football pitch."
October 13, 2017
Mamadou called up by Ivory Coast
Former Doncaster Rovers defender Mamadou Bagayoko, who played five games for Rovers in the 2011/12 season, was called up as a late replacement for the Ivory Coast for their World Cup qualifying game away against Mali, which ended in a 1-1 draw. He ended up being an unused substitute, with Ivory Coast temporarily going to the top of Group C, only to find Morocco's 3-0 win over Gabon led to them being replaced at the top of the group only hours later.
Bagayoko currently plays for Belgian club OH Leuven. He started three games and was substitute on three other occasions during his time at Rovers - his Rovers debut was against Notts County in the FA Cup, which Rovers lost 2-0, and he played his last game on 10th March in Rovers' 1-1 draw at West Ham United.
October 13, 2017
Allanson joins Barton
Ex-Doncaster Rovers defender Gary Allanson has joined Toolstation NCEL Premier Division club Barton Town as their new first team coach. Allanson had most recently been manager at Bridlington Town, but left the club for what were described as "personal reasons" in November 2016.
He had been at the club for a few weeks assisting previous manager Paul Foot.
He will be assisting new boss David Ricardo, who joined from divisional rivals Hall Road Rangers at the end of September.
During his playing career, Gary was a right back and played for Doncaster Rovers between 1981 and 1984 and tended to feature in the side towards the end of each season. He went on to enjoy a lengthy career in non-league football after leaving Belle Vue, playing for clubs such as Brigg Town, Goole Town and North Ferriby United.
October 12, 2017
Richie wants Latics job
Former Rovers skipper Richie Wellens is enjoying his first taste of football management after being put in temporary charge, and has confirmed that he would like the job on a full-time basis.
His chances must be decent having won two out of two games and pulling the club out of the League One relegation zone, but the club are reported to be interviewing a number of other candidates, including former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes.
When asked on BBC Radio 5 Live whether he wanted the job, Wellens said: "I've said yes. I don't want to be out of the game, I want to be at the club. I belong in a football environment, it's been my life. If they give me the job, brilliant. If not, I need to be working in football as that's what I'm about."
He added: "This club has been in League One for 21 years. The last time we got in the play-offs was when I was a player. Each year we fight relegation, we defend our box, we kick it out, we nick a goal, we hold on and stay up. When I was at Doncaster, people used to call us the Arsenal of the north. I want to try and get something like that here. Let's see if this club in the next two or three years can get into the Championship."
October 12, 2017
McCormack makes Aussie debut
Ex-Rovers loan striker Ross McCormack has completed his loan move to Australia and has made his debut for Melbourne City. Melbourne won the game 2-0, and while McCormack did not score during the 82 minutes he had on the pitch, he did help set up the second goal in what was his first start since March.
McCormack has signed a loan agreement that lasts until January and admits to being a little 'rusty', but confirms his general fitness is good, and the 'match fitness' will come as he gets more games, which match reports of his debut tend to confirm.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported: "McCormack arrived in Australia less than a week ago and it showed, despite a few moments where he impressed with his touch."
October 12, 2017
Injury blow for Stock
Former Rovers captain Brian Stock has suffered a training ground injury and will be out of acton for at least six weeks after damaging a knee cartilage, which will require surgery.
He is still playing for non-league club Havant & Waterlooville alongside former Rovers team mate James Hayter, and his club boss Lee Bradbury commented of the injury: ‘Losing Brian is a big blow. He is the glue in our team."
We note that Brian set up the Brian Stock Football Academy in the summer of 2016, which is offering football training for youngsters in the Bournemouth area.
October 12, 2017
Webster set to miss rest of season
Another former Rovers player has been in the wars, with defender Byron Webster, now playing for Millwall, set to miss the rest of the season after suffering a serious knee injury.
Webster has had surgery on a ruptured cruciate ligament, and boss Neil Harris is doubtful he will be back in action before the end of the season, commenting: "We don't want to put a definitive timescale on his recovery, but it will be long-term. Seeing Byron back before the end of the season would be a huge bonus."
October 12, 2017
Voting results v Southend United
It will be of little surprise to learn that hat-trick hero Ben Whiteman was voted as the "Man of the Match" for Saturday's home game against Southend United. He came well ahead of all other players, gaining nearly two out of every three votes received.
We received nominations for five different players, with the most votes going to the following:
1 Ben Whiteman (64.29%)
2 Alfie May (14.29%)
Thank you to everyone for taking the time to place your vote. The next vote will open at the weekend after the away game at Charlton Athletic.
October 12, 2017
Voting results v Sunderland U21s
We received votes for six different players for last Tuesday's home game against Sunderland Under-21s in the Checkatrade Trophy - which, considering the attendance, wasn't bad!
There was a fairly even distribution of votes for this game, but those receiving the most votes were:
1 Issam Ben Khemis (44.44%)
2 Liam Mandeville (22.22%)
October 11, 2017
Walsall 0 Rovers Development XI 4
Doncaster Rovers gave a number of fringe players some game time in yesterday's Development XI game at Walsall, with Development boss John Schofield pleased with their performance.
The Rovers goals were scored by Liam Mandeville, James Morris (2) and Jacob Fletcher, with Fletcher reported to be full of confidence after being given a brief first team debut on Saturday.
The game also marked the return to action of Mathieu Baudry after a lengthy absence, and he played 60 minutes of the game without any apparent problems.
Schofield told DROS: "It was important to get game time for players like Frenchy, Craig Alcock and Issam Ben Khemis - that will do them the world of good. And the younger players alongside them will come on for it as well, we still had a very young squad out there and the way they are coming on this season is brilliant."
October 11, 2017
Ferguson updates on injury situation
Rovers boss Darren Ferguson has confirmed that striker Alex Kiwomya is progressing well as he recovers from the rare autoimmune disorder Guillain-Barre syndrome.
However, Alex has suffered muscle weakness as an after effect, so he has been doing a lot of work in the gym to build up his muscle and body strength.
Ferguson told the Doncaster Star: "Yes, I’m confident we’ll see him this season. I don’t think we’ll see him this year but we’ll see him this season. He’s coming along well. He’s really improved over the last couple of weeks. He was in the gym on Monday and we’ve seen a real improvement in him so I’m delighted."
Luke McCullough had a slight set-back after having a "small thigh problem", but he is set to return to training in the next few days as he recovers from a knee injury.
Better news comes with the recovery of defender Mathieu Baudry, who played an hour of yesterday's Development XI game at Walsall.
Mathieu could be involved with the first team as early as Saturday, with Ferguson adding: "We’ll see how he comes through this first period of playing. He’s trained very well, he looks good. We’ll see how he is on Thursday morning and if there’s no reaction, he’ll train Thursday. It’s then a decision I’ll have to make whether he’ll be involved at Charlton or whether I keep him another week."
October 11, 2017
Youth Team 1 Port Vale 1
Youth team boss Paul Stancliffe was pleased to see an improvement in the youth team's performance after being critical in recent weeks.
In his post-match comments, Stancliffe told DROS: "From my last few interviews that we’ve had we’ve been talking about the lack of co-ordination, but it was totally different. I can honestly say that we haven’t got what we deserved so there’s a lot of positives in the performance. We have gone from the disappointment of last week where we probably didn’t deserve anything based on just the first 20 minutes, to where they are disappointed this week because they put in a performance for 90 minutes."
Rovers dominated the early proceedings, but it took until just before half time for them to take the lead through Myron Gibbons. However, a defensive mistake in the second half allowed Port Vale to equalise, with Kyle Johnson taking advantage.
October 11, 2017
Stewart in talks with Oldham
Ex-Rovers midfielder Richie Wellens, temporarily in charge at Oldham Athletic following the sacking of John Sheridan, has invited former Rovers loan winger Cameron Stewart to the club to train, and they are discussing a contract which will run until the end of the season.
The 26 year old is a free agent after being released by Ipswich Town and has also trained with Sheffield United, Charlton Athletic and Port Vale - but Oldham seems to be the most likely destination for him.
The two potential complications are that Wellens is only caretaker manager at the moment - and Oldham are yet to pay their staff for September while talks are ongoing with potential new investors.
October 11, 2017
Villa want Johnstone on permanent deal
Former Rovers loan goalkeeper Sam Johnstone has impressed Aston Villa boss Steve Bruce since joining the club on a season-long loan from Manchester United in the summer.
Bruce is keen on making the loan into a full transfer in the January transfer window, if he can persuade Manchester United to complete the deal.
Bruce told the Daily Mirror: "“It would be great to keep him here for the next few years as Villa’s No.1. I will need to ask the question. The ideal move for us would be to buy him in January. You’ve seen it, a young goalkeeper coming in and getting better with every game he plays. The difference in him since he’s started in January to now is light years. He’s confident, playing every week and he’s playing real football."
October 11, 2017
Penney joins York
Martin Gray has been appointed as York City's new first team manager after resigning as boss of Darlington.
One of his first acts was to confirm the appointment of former Doncaster Rovers manager Dave Penney as the club's new Director of Football. The pair previously worked together at Darlington and Oldham, where Gray was Penney's assistant manager. Penney was most recently Guiseley's Director of Football, when ex-Rover Adam Lockwood was manager.
However, club owner Jason McGill has stressed that the former Rovers boss will not be involved in team selection or training, which will be left to Martin Gray.
He told the York Press: "Dave is someone with an abundance of experience at various levels of the game, who understands scouting and recruitment, and who has excellent contacts in the game. He will be responsible for the overall performance of the various sporting departments at the football club. For clarity, I can confirm that the sporting director will not pick the team. He will assist, but not lead training or determine tactics. The manager will also have the final say on all signings."
Penney’s role will involve development of the club’s ‘footballing identity’, improving the scouting network and ensuring high standards are maintained throughout the club.
"His extensive knowledge of the football industry will be a major asset," McGill added. "I am also confident that this new structure will make the club stronger going forward."
October 10, 2017
Rovers 4 Southend United 1
When things are going against you, you start to fear the worst when the opposition score a goal, especially when Rovers had the horrendous record of having lost every match this season where they have conceded first. Even worse, Rovers had not even scored in all of those instances.
So when Rovers had the double-whammy of going behind - and with a player that many argue was very lucky to still be on the pitch - there only seemed to be one way this match was going to turn out.
Thankfully, not everything goes according to the script, and Rovers went on to comprehensively beat Southend. The equaliser came from an attack down the left, with John Marquis' shot initially blocked, but the ball went back in to the goal mouth and he stabbed the ball home from only a couple of yards out. It looked a bit like a pinball method of play, but it worked, and Rovers were level at the break.
The next theory has Rovers vulnerable to concede a goal in the couple of minutes after half time. This time, Rovers turned that idea completely around, with a free kick by James Coppinger hitting the crossbar, with the ball bouncing out to Ben Whiteman, who half-volleyed the ball into the centre of the net from 15 yards.
It got better - another James Coppinger free kick was only cleared as far as Whiteman, who needed no time to volley the ball home off the underside of the crossbar.
When the hard-running Alfie May was brought down in the penalty area only a few minutes later, there was little doubt who would take the spot kick - and Whiteman sent the keeper the wrong way to complete his hat-trick.
It was not the best performance of the season, but when you haven't won at home all season, it will do quite nicely!
October 10, 2017
What the managers said
A delighted Darren Ferguson saw his Rovers side win their first home game of the season, something he has been waiting for for some time.
Speaking after the game, he said: "It’s a good day and I think it has been coming. We know we have got goals in us but we have to improve. And today there was improvement. The difference is we were clinical in the top end of the pitch. We'd worked on all week and spoken about all week about the improvement we needed to make in that area. And we showed it. We blew them away in ten minutes and the game was over. It ended up being a comfortable victory."
"Plenty of credit to my players for the character they showed, going 1-0 behind from a player that shouldn’t be on the pitch. The start of the second half we were so aggressive. The quality was superb."
"Copps' free kick was of real quality and Ben showed good composure to stick in in. And the third goal was outstanding. For the penalty, Alfie does what he does, getting down the side of people. Defenders don't want to defend out there and he gets past them to win it."
"I think everyone would agree we’ve been quite unfortunate to lose some of the games that we have done this season, and even draw some of the games we have done. I didn’t think it was our most fluent game in possession, but it was a win. I think we’ve played better this season and lost. But that’s football and that’s sometimes how it works. The difference was that we were clinical. The goals were outstanding."
Southend boss Phil Brown did wonder after the game whether they would have played better in the second half if Southend player Anthony Wordsworth had been sent off for kicking Jordan Houghton instead of only receiving a yellow card.
Speaking after the game, Brown said: "The Ferguson effect is still around but it’s not Sir Alex it’s Darren now. Darren had a direct pop at the ref at half-time and he crumbled under pressure."
"They were angry Woody (Anthony Wordsworth) wasn’t sent off but if the ref thought it was a red card he should have sent him off and kept it level. But he didn’t send him off and having looked at it again he probably felt it was a red card and I couldn’t disagree with that."
"If we went down to 10 men we would have got a more honest display so the ref didn’t do us any favours."
He added: "The players have been crying out for a surface like that after regularly slagging off the Roots Hall pitch but maybe it’s time to get back there. To go a goal up and lose 4-1 stinks of something being wrong in the changing room and I’ve got to get to the bottom of that. I could stand here all night and slaughter the referee but it wasn’t anything to with him. Our second half performance wasn’t worthy of anything especially in the first 10 or 15 minutes."
October 10, 2017
Match highlights

There are match highlights of Saturday's home game against Southend available on the Sky Sports web site.
To view them, please click on their logo to the left.

October 10, 2017
Hume quits at Sheffield FC
Former Doncaster Rovers defender Mark Hume has resigned as manager of Evo-Stik League South club Sheffield FC.
He made the decision after their defeat against Leek Town at the end of last month, and said by way of explanation: "For a number of reasons, things just haven’t worked as I’d expected and for the benefit of this club, which I have a real feeling for, it is time for a change of manager. Everyone at the club has been really helpful and welcoming and I shall miss it."
Hume had been appointed as Sheffield's manager in May after previously managing Matlock Town and was assistant manager at Bradford Park Avenue for four and a half years.
October 10, 2017
Poorly Glynn faces time out of the game
Ex-Rovers defender and assistant boss Glynn Snodin is likely to be out of the game for a while after being rushed to hospital after Sunderland's 1-1 draw with Hull City last month.
There is no word as to what is wrong with Snodin, but reports suggest that he is likely to be off work for a considerable time while he recovers, with Sunderland boss Simon Grayson actively looking to bring someone else in to replace his assistant manager.
Snodin moved to Sunderland in the summer after the appointment of Simon Grayson, with the pair tasked with rebuilding the Black Cats after their relegation from the Premier League last season.
October 7, 2017
Rovers v Southend United
Darren Ferguson is likely to tinker with his starting eleven as he continues to search for a winning combination as Doncaster Rovers prepare to face in-form Southend United at the Keepmoat Stadium this afternoon.
Reports vary as to whether goalkeeper Ian Lawlor will be fit to play - some say Marko Marosi will continue in goal, while others suggest Ferguson reckons that Lawlor is fit.
Striker Andy Williams is set to miss out after picking up a groin injury in the first half of Tuesday's Checkatrade Trophy game against Sunderland, but skipper James Coppinger will be recalled to the side after being rested against Bradford City.
The usual quintet of Ross Etheridge, Danny Andrew, Mathieu Baudry, Luke McCullough and Alex Kiwomya will again be missing as they continue to recover from injury, but apart from them, all others should be available for selection.
Southend come into the game with boss Phil Brown warning his players of the threat Rovers pose, even if on a poor run of form. He said in his pre-match press conference: "We’re probably coming into a game against a side who are the opposite to what we are at the moment. I think they’ve lost six out of the last seven but if you have a look at the opposition that they’ve faced, they’ve faced some really tough opposition. Arsenal being one, Shrewsbury being one, Bradford another one and Scunthorpe. But you look at the home league form in particular and they haven’t won at home this season yet, but that will change."
Brown added: "We’ve got to make sure on Saturday with the moment that we’re in, the form that we’re in, the confidence that we’re feeling, that we go in there full of confidence and express ourselves.At this moment in time they’re not having a good time, and we are. We have to emphasise that point on Saturday."
Southend will be without Jason Demetriou, who is away on international duty, and their injury list includes Michael Kightly, Michael Turner, Rob Kierman and Ben Coker.
October 7, 2017
Ferguson wants improvement
Boss Darren Ferguson has been stressing in training this week of the need to make various improvements after watching numerous videos to help identify where the problems lie for his Rovers side.
He told DROS ahead of today's game: "I think we need to improve at the top end of the pitch, I have watched a lot of videos back and we have had too many blanks, there are a lot of reasons for that, whether it’s the cross, shot or finish and we have improve."
"We have been unhappy with the goals we have conceded, and if you look through the games this season we have lost a lot through set-pieces that needs to stop. We need to keep believing and to get our performances to a certain standard, we are not far off and I think we did a lot of good things against Bradford last time out."
He warned of the threat that Southend pose, but pointed out their varying form so far this season, adding: "They have had a strange season so far, they won their first game of the season against Blackburn and they were very impressive, then they went through a stage of eight or nine games without a win. They are a very experienced squad with a very experienced manager in Phil Brown and have found a formula that has won them three out of the last three games. But we are focusing on us this weekend, on what we can do better, so it’s about how we perform on Saturday."
October 7, 2017
Injury update
Doncaster Rovers will be without striker Andy Williams after he picked up a thigh injury in Tuesday's game against Sunderland - but Darren Ferguson has reported that Ian Lawlor will be fit to play in today's game, with Ferguson telling the Yorkshire Post: "Ian is fit and fine. He was a big bonus as we felt last week that he would be (out for) a little bit longer."
Rovers will give Matty Blair a late fitness test after he missed out last weekend, but Ferguson thinks he has a "good chance" of being in the squad today.
Mathieu Baudry and Luke McCullough are back in training, but are not near enough to be considered today, although next week's Development XI game could see Baudry given a run-out.
Ferguson added: “(Mathieu) Baudry is training really well. He won’t be involved on Saturday, but he is scheduled to be involved on Tuesday in a development game against Walsall. (Luke) McCullough perhaps won’t be; he felt a little tweak at the top of his thigh. It is not too serious, he will probably be back on the grass on Monday."
October 7, 2017
Today's match officials
The match officials appointed by the Football League for this afternoon's home game against Southend United are:
Referee: Darren Handley
Assistant Referees: Richard Bartlett and Richard Wild
Fourth Official: Sebastian Stockbridge
October 7, 2017
O'Connor signs for Harriers
Former Doncaster Rovers defender James O'Connor has signed for Kidderminster Harriers on a three year deal.
O'Connor was a free agent after leaving Walsall by mutual consent back in August when it became clear that he was not in manager Jon Whitney's plans for the coming season, but he jumped at the chance to work with Harriers boss John Eustace, who he knows from a time when the pair were at Derby County.
He made 40 appearances for Walsall last season, but has been training with the Kidderminster squad for several weeks since leaving Walsall.
O'Connor commented: "I was invited into the club by the manager a couple of weeks ago. I came in and got a really good feel for the place. It really impressed me; it’s really well run and really forward-thinking. From day one I enjoyed my time and got the bit between my teeth, I’m really looking forward to getting going. You can see everyone pulling in the same direction at the club and they all have one goal, and that’s to get back into the Football League as quickly as possible. It’s exciting to be part of a project that’s so exciting for the club and the town."
October 7, 2017
Voting results v Bradford City
We received nominations for six different players for the "Man of the Match" voting for last Saturday's game at Bradford City, with the following finishing clear of the pack:
1 Tommy Rowe (33.3%)
2 Joe Wright (22.2%)
Thank you to everyone who took part in the voting. The voting for the Sunderland game will remain open until early on Sunday, after which the voting for the Southend game is scheduled to begin.
October 6, 2017
Rovers 1 Sunderland U21s 0
Doncaster Rovers made sure of their progression through to the next stage of the Checkatrade Trophy on Tuesday evening by beating Sunderland Under 21s at the Keepmoat Stadium. In a low-key game, in which just over 1,500 supporters turned up, there were few moments of excitement to be witnessed, with the first half's few chances all coming from set pieces.
Liam Mandeville hit the woodwork with a free kick from 25 yards, and Marosi had to save from a Sunderland free kick by Ethan Robson.
The only goal of the game came in the 70th minute, when Sunderland's Rodwell was caught in possession, the ball was played out to Mandeville on the right, who squared the ball for Issam Ben Khemis to score his first goal for Rovers by firing the ball into the top right corner out of the reach of the Sunderland goalkeeper, with his goal celebrations being the entertainment highlight of the evening!
As expected, Darren Ferguson made as many changes as competition rules allowed, with just three players (Marko Marosi, Harry Toffolo and Niall Mason) from Saturday's game at Bradford City starting the game. Five youngsters were handed their senior team debuts by Ferguson - Jacob Fletcher and Tyler Walker starting the game, while James Morris, Morgan James and Cody Prior all were introduced as substitutes.
Darren Ferguson was probably pleased by the performance of what was a very young Rovers team, and he must be hoping that this boost to confidence finds its way through to the rest of the squad for this Saturday's league game.
October 6, 2017
Les Mutrie
We are saddened to hear that former Doncaster Rovers striker Les Mutrie has died after a long battle with oesophegeal cancer at the age of 66.
Les only played nine times for Rovers, during the 1983/84 season, making his debut in Rovers' Division Four match at Aldershot, which Rovers lost 2-1.
He was born in Newcastle, and began his footballing career at Gateshead in 1977 before moving on to Carlisle United and then Blyth Spartans. His big footballing opportunity came in 1980 when he moved to Hull City, and played over a hundred games for the Tigers in a four year stay. He then went on to play for Doncaster Rovers, Colchester United and Hartlepool United before being forced to retire from playing due to injury.
Blyth Spartans will be marking his passing by having a minute's silence before their home game against Nuneaton Town.
We would like to pass on our sympathy to his friends and family at this sad time.
October 6, 2017
What the managers said
Darren Ferguson praised the Rovers Young Guns after Tuesday's win over the Sunderland Under-21s side.
Rovers may have only won by one goal, but Ferguson gave a number of Academy players their big chance in the game, and he was quick to point it out in his post-match press conference, in which he said: "I really enjoyed it, I’m really pleased. A win’s a win, it doesn’t matter in what tournament, or what team’s picked. We had a young team out there - the average age was 19 for the last half an hour - and I was delighted with them. They showed really good energy, played some really good football, scored a really good goal, terrible celebration!"
"They changed their shape in the second half but we coped with it really well. I was delighted with them. It was a really good performance. It was good to get a clean sheet and we probably could’ve had one or two more goals."
The downside for Ferguson was an apparent injury to striker Andy Williams. He commented: "Williams felt his thigh at half time, that was probably the biggest disappointment of the night. We’ll just have to wait and see what he’s like the morning."
Sunderland's Under 21s boss Robbie Stockdale was disappointed with the performance of his side, with the result meaning they cannot now qualify for the next stage of the competition.
Stockdale told Sunderland's official web site: "I felt we got what we deserved from the game tonight. I was very disappointed with our first-half display, we didn't play with any intensity and I thought our movement to get on the ball wasn't great. Off the ball we were ok and we had a solid little shape. We didn't really ask any meaningful questions of Doncaster's defence."
"We decided to change it tactically and tried to change the mentality at half-time and I thought for the first 20-25 minutes of the second-half we moved it a lot quicker. We were more of a threat, we ran forward and we did all of the things we would expect a Sunderland team to do. Ultimately, we crumbled and didn't create an awful lot, we made a mistake and they scored with a good finish."
October 6, 2017
Duo return after loan spell

Rovers youngsters Jacob Fletcher and Keegan Townrow have returned to Doncaster Rovers at the end of their loan spell at Spading United, with the Tulips winning their last three games at home. Both returned in time to be included in the squad for Tuesday's game against Sunderland, with Fletcher going on to make his first team debut for Rovers.

October 6, 2017
Chesterfield 2 Rovers Youth 1
Doncaster Rovers lost their Youth Alliance game against Chesterfield last weekend, conceding two early goals condemning Paul Stancliffe's players to their fate.
His comments after the game were reminiscent of those of Darren Ferguson of late - recurring mistakes being their downfall.
Stancliffe told DROS after the game: "I felt like we could’ve at least got a point out of it, there were a lot of positives in the second half but I am saying the same things week in, week out. We have spells in the game and we don’t concentrate well enough and we concede in those spells - other teams probably do the same, but they don’t concede. We’ve got to toughen up because it’s the same story every week."
October 6, 2017
Travel information to Exeter
The Doncaster Rovers Supporters Club are running coaches to the away game at Charlton Athletic, which is on Saturday, 14th October.
They will leave Retford at 8.30am, Harworth 8.35am, Bawtry 8.45am, Rossington Styrrup 8.45pm, 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 £22 - Concessions £20
Non-members: Adults £24 - Concessions £22
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 next Wednesday.
October 6, 2017
Woods out after suffering freak injury
Ex-Rovers goalkeeper Gary Woods could be out of action for around a month after a freak injury in Hamilton Academical's game against St Johnstone at the end of September.
Woods has a lacerated kidney after he landed heavily during the game, but the diagnosis surprised his manager, who said: "I don’t know how it’s happened Just by landing heavily it seems. It’s just a freak accident. He had a bit of bother with it over the weekend and went up to hospital yesterday. They’re keeping him in for 48 hours to keep an eye on him. They don’t think it will be anything major, but it will definitely put him out of Friday."
October 3, 2017
Rovers v Sunderland U21s
Darren Ferguson has already said that he will make as many changes to the side as competition rules allow for this evening's Checkatrade Trophy game at home to Sunderland U21s.
He probably would have made several changes anyway, as most clubs at this stage of the competition use the Checkatrade Trophy as a means of getting fringe players some time on the pitch, but the recent series of results suggest that Ferguson had decided some changes are needed. And this evening's game gives some players the ideal opportunity to persuade him to select them on Saturday.
Goalkeeper Louis Jones is expected to be handed his first team debut after being recalled from his loan at Tadcaster to sit on the bench last Saturday. Also in with a good chance of starting tonight's game are Craig Alcock, Tyler Garratt, Liam Mandeville, Andy Williams and Issam Ben Khemis, although Alfie Beestin and Will Longbottom will not play due to injury.
Mathieu Baudry and Luke McCullough may have resumed training, but they are not ready for a return to match action. Also injured are Ross Etheridge, Danny Andrew and Alex Kiwomya.
Rodney Kongolo is away on international duty with Holland's Under 19s, so is unavailable.
Rovers are hoping that the Checkatrade Trophy game will have a positive effect on the club, with assistant boss Gavin Strachan commenting: "Over the last couple of seasons we’ve really liked the Checkatrade Trophy. We feel it’s been a really good platform for players who need game time and players who want to stake a claim for a professional contract or really get into the manager’s mind. It’s worked well for us. The last game at Grimsby was a really productive outing. It got Rodney Kongolo more game time and he’s carried on progressing. It also got Issam [Ben Khemis] some game time, Tyler Garratt, and Alfie Beestin who was really good in that game. So it provides us with that, and we’ll carry on in the same mould with it."
Sunderland are likely to feature Jack Rodwell, Adam Matthews, Donald Love and former Rovers loanee Lynden Gooch - all of them played in their Group H opening game at Scunthorpe United.
And remember, the this evening's match starts at 7.30pm.
October 3, 2017
Tonight's match officials
The match officials for this evening's home game against Sunderland in the Checkatrade Trophy will be:
Referee: Ross Joyce
Assistant referees: Alix Pashley and Matthew Jones
Fourth official: James Bell
October 3, 2017
Bradford City 2 Rovers 0
The recent run of results continued for Doncaster Rovers with a familiar pattern emerging during these games. They have played fairly well throughout, but what must be put down to horrendous lack of concentration is occurring on too many occasions, and boss Darren Ferguson's post-match comments suggest that he has just about had enough.
Rovers may be having a fair bit of possession along the way, but there does not seem to be the cutting edge up front to turn possession into real goal scoring opportunities.
And so it proved to be on Saturday at Valley Parade. Rovers dominated the early stages of the game, but danger man Charlie Wyke put Bradford in front in the 18th minute when Adam Chicksen cut in from the left to deliver a cross which Wyke headed back across goal into the net.
With half time approaching and a chance for Darren Ferguson to reorganise things in the hope of levelling matters after the break, Rovers were dealt a hammer blow as Bradford scored a second goal. A corner won by Bradford was crossed into the centre, with defender Nat Knight-Perciveal heading home out of the reach of Marko Marosi.
Rovers had more of the possession in the second half as they tried to get something out of the game, but despite all the huffing and puffing, they couldn't blow Bradford's little house down.
October 3, 2017
What the managers said
It was a frustrated and disappointed Darren Ferguson who answered questions from the press after Saturday's defeat at Bradford City - and the continuing pattern of things contributing to Rovers' downfall is something that he says has to change.
Speaking to BBC Radio Sheffield, he said: "You can change personnel but the basics of the game don't change. Both boxes are where you win and lose it and we've lost it. It's as simple as that."
"We're beating ourselves. We're not giving ourselves a chance at the minute. Even when it went to 1-0 they had a strong period in the game. They're always going to get a strong period. It was probably their strongest period, You see it through. I'm thinking get to half time and there's one goal in it. We concede on 40 minutes. Not doing the basics. A free header from a set piece."
"We started the game fine, we started the game well and very positive. Stop crosses, deal with set pieces, deal with Wyke. We couldn't do it. And it cost us the game. Defensively we had to deal with that."
"At the other end we needed more quality. Alfie May had a chance early in the second half., we should score and then we've got a game on. We kept going. But I'm not going to praise them for keep going because it's a gimmie."
"We're just not doing the basics. Bradford's game plan would be getting balls into the box because that's how they play. From set pieces they're very, very strong. And not dealing with that has cost us the game."
October 3, 2017
Jones recalled by Rovers
Goalkeeper Louis Jones has been recalled from his loan at Tadcaster Albion by Doncaster Rovers. The decision came after Ian Lawlor was injured against Shrewsbury last week, with the club needing goalkeeping cover for Marko Marosi, who played on Saturday.
Jones played four games for Tadcaster in his short loan spell. He was signed due to an injury to first choice keeper Michael Ingham, another former Rovers player, who is likely to remain injured for the next four to six weeks.
October 3, 2017
Danny called up by Northern Ireland
Youth team defender Danny Amos has been included in the Northern Ireland Under-19 squad for their forthcoming European Championship qualifying matches against Poland, German and Belarus on 4th, 7th and 10th October respectively.
The tournament is a group set-up at the moment, with the top two going through to the next round next year.
Rovers Head of Academy Kieran Scarff told DROS: "This is an excellent reward for Danny’s hard work, he can be hugely proud of this call-up and we all wish him well as he heads to Poland for the week. This is a sign of the real progress we’re making as a club and is recognition for the level of work being carried out within the Academy. The addition of a development squad this season, alongside the daily work with the first team players and support from academy and first team staff is helping lads like Danny progress and test themselves against senior players."
October 3, 2017
Ferguson considers changes
Boss Darren Ferguson has hinted that changes in personnel will be made in a bid to arrest the poor set of results experience by Rovers in recent weeks. And that will be apart from the predictable several changes for this evening's game against Sunderland, with fringe players set to take over in some positions if they impress sufficiently.
Ferguson told the Yorkshire Post at the weekend: "We have to start winning games. We know what’s costing us. At the end of the day, if we continue not winning games for the reasons that we are saying, personnel has to change, it’s as simple as that. At the moment, we are not doing the basics but I still have a team that has got belief – there is no doubt about that."
Hinting that the timing of the return fitness of some of the players currently sidelined through injury will be ideal, Ferguson added: "I’ve got Baudry coming back, McCullough coming back, Beestin coming back. At the moment perhaps there are one or two areas where I’m short of in terms of not being able to change. But then again there are some players playing very well for us. I’m glad to see the back of September. I think we all are."
"We have got to make sure we keep the belief because it’d be doubly difficult if that were to go. But I definitely see a team that his still got belief. There’s no doubt about that. We have to start getting results. That’s never going to change in football. I see performances but we’ve lost again through basically again, players not doing what they’re told to do."