October 21, 2016
Fergie challenges Mandeville to stake claim
Rovers boss Darren Ferguson has challenged young striker Liam Mandeville to stake a claim for a place in the club's first eleven after learning that top scorer Andy Williams will be missing for up to ten weeks with ankle ligament damage.
Ferguson will give players at the club the first opportunity to persuade him they deserve a place in the side before thinking of bringing in a new player, and Mandeville is in pole position to stake that claim, having been given a chance against Colchester United.
Ferguson told the Doncaster Star: "I think Mandeville could be a really good player but he needs to understand himself that he’ll never get a better opportunity that he’s got now. He needs to step forward. He needs to really grasp the opportunity that I’m prepared to give him but mentally he needs to be stronger. He needs to be accepting that responsibility."
"I’ve got John Marquis, Liam, Alfie Beestin, Will Longbottom. Liam has got to be seeing he’s going to get an opportunity. He’s a very good player. I’ll be speaking to him. He did very well last week but he’s just got to be consistent now."
He added: "People go on about getting a chance – I’m going to need the whole squad this season. When the opportunity comes, they’ve got to step up because there is no one else. If some people get opportunities and don’t take them, I’ll be bringing someone else in. We haven’t got time to waste."
October 21, 2016
Oscar joins Mansfield
Former Doncaster Rovers loan midfielder Oscar Gobern has signed for Mansfield Town on a free transfer.
The 25 year old left Huddersfield Town, where he had made more than 70 appearances, to join QPR just over a year ago, but then went out on loan to Rovers, where his loan was cut short by an anterior cruciate ligament injury, so he played just two games for QPR and five for Rovers.
He was then released by QPR before deciding to make his switch back north to join the Stags.
Mansfield boss Adam Murray commented: "Oscar was waiting for an opportunity at a club which matches his ambition and after speaking to a few [clubs] in League One, he felt that we were the right fit."
October 21, 2016
Voting results v Colchester
Goalkeeper Marko Marosi pulled off some key saves to keep Doncaster Rovers in Saturday's home game against Colchester, so unusually for when Rovers have won, was the clear winner of the "Man of the Match" voting. Goalkeepers tend to do well in the voting in matches when Rovers have lost, but thankfully on this occasion, his saves enabled Rovers to snatch victory to maintain their promotion challenge.
He gained five times as many votes as his nearest rival, John Marquis. A total of six different players received nominations, with the players gaining the most votes being:
1 Marko Marosi (71.43%)
2 John Marquis (14.29%)
3 James Coppinger (5.71%)
We thank everyone who took the time to place a vote. The next poll will open after this weekend's away game at Blackpool.
October 21, 2016
Johnstone signs new deal then hopes to leave
Ex-Rovers loan goalkeeper has signed a new contract at Manchester United, which will keep him at the club until 2018.
Johnstone is third choice keeper at United, and has not yet played a first team game for the club, although he has been on the bench on a couple of occasions.
However, he has impressed new United boss Jose Mourinho, who said: "He is a very professional young man with a great attitude to the game. He has progressed immensely even during my short time at the club. I am delighted he has committed his future to Manchester United."
Johnstone had been expected to go out on loan before the transfer window, and judging by comments he made on Instagram last week, it is still his preferred option, so that he can get more first team experience to push his claim for a chance at Old Trafford.
October 21, 2016
Brown joins the Blades
Former Doncaster Rovers loan defender Reece Brown has joined Sheffield United on a short term contract that keeps him at Bramall Lane until January.
Boss Chris Wilder told the club's official web site: "He adds weight to our squad and knows the division well. He has done everything we have asked of him, trained well and impressed. His pedigree is good and this is an opportunity to earn a longer deal."
Wilder confirmed that Brown's future will be reviewed in January.
The 24 year old was previously on trials at the club and was warned that he joins a dressing room with its eyes on promotion.
Wilder added: "You need good team spirit, that togetherness, and a respect for each other. To look each other in the eye and know you have given everything in training. We have got that here. There’s nobody here not giving 100 per cent, and that’s why we have started really well. There’s no hiding place in the dressing room, the lads know when you are not giving 100 per cent."
October 19, 2016
Rovers given away draw
Doncaster Rovers have been handed a relatively tough draw in the First Round of this year's FA Cup, with a trip to Oldham Athletic ahead.
Oldham may be still in the bottom four of the League One table, but they beat leaders Scunthorpe United on Saturday, proving that they will pose a significant threat to Darren Ferguson's men.
The game will be played on the weekend of 4th to 7th November.
The full draw can be seen by clicking on the logo to the left.
October 19, 2016
Rovers to release N'Guessan
Doncaster Rovers are closing in on a deal to release unwanted striker Dany N'Guessan, who is still with the club after Southend United interested their interest in the player ahead of the transfer deadline.
N'Guessan has been training with Rovers' youth team this season after Darren Ferguson made it clear that he does not have the Frenchman in his plans for the first team this season - putting the club's young talent ahead of N'Guessan in his priorities.
Ferguson explained to the Doncaster Free Press: "There’s been a deal agreed for him to leave. The answer is no anyway. I’m not going to try to stop the development of my younger players."
N'Guessan joined Rovers on a free transfer from Greek club AEL Larissa in July 2015 by Paul Dickov, and only made two starts and seven substitute appearances last season, although a toe injury did not help things last term.
October 17, 2016
Williams injury blow
Doncaster Rovers top scorer Andy Williams faces up to ten weeks out after a scan revealed that he is suffering from ankle ligament damage that he sustained right at the end of last weekend's game against Barnet.
Boss Darren Ferguson has now imminent plans to bring in a replacement, but is leaving his options open.
He revealed after Saturday's home win against Colchester United: "Andy’s going to be out for eight to ten weeks. It’s a bad one. We’ve looked at December 10 as a possible return date. He’ll miss seven league games. Will we look to get someone in? We’ve been keeping aware of what’s out there, but I’m certainly not going to panic and just bring anyone in."
October 17, 2016
Richardson set for new contract
Defender Frazer Richardson is to be offered an extension to his short term contract at Doncaster Rovers, with Rovers requiring defensive cover while Mitchell Lund recovers from his kidney problem.
Richardson signed an initial two month deal at the club, but is understood to be in talks to extend his stay until January. His present deal runs out on 29th October, with Darren Ferguson keen to keep the former Leeds defender at the club for longer.
Ferguson told the Doncaster Star: "We’ve had discussions. His deal finishes on the 29th and we are looking to extend it until January. He got a bit of a setback when he got injured at Crewe but I want to give him the opportunity to get fully fit. We’ll probably get a week of pre-season into him now we can extend the deal."
"And also with Mitchell Lund being out for so long and there’s no guarantee Craig Alcock is going to come back soon. We presume he will but you never know. I need to make sure I do the right thing and we have the right numbers. Also I like the lad. I think he’s a good player and a fantastic professional. Sometimes you can’t get enough of those really good senior pros. We’ve got a few of those now."
October 17, 2016
Fortune signs for Southend
Former Doncaster Rovers loan striker Marc-Antoine Fortune has signed a short term contract with League One club Southend United. He had been a free agent after leaving Coventry City at the end of last season, but joined Southend on a deal that lasts until 23rd January 2017.
He had been training with the club prior to signing at the end of September, with a deal in doubt until the last minute, with local reports suggesting he had priced himself out of a deal.
Southend boss Phil Brown told the Southend Echo: "Marc has worked well in training and he’s integrated into the group well too. He trained with us all last week and also played at Peterborough in the under-21 game last week. He should play against Dagenham and then we’ll talk again after that and see where that takes us."
October 16, 2016
Rovers 1 Colchester United 0
Football can be a cruel game, and it's odds on that most Colchester United supporters, as well as their players and management, will be thinking that this morning after Doncaster Rovers picked up all three points in yesterday's game at the Keepmoat Stadium. Quite how the visitors failed to leave with a win is mystifying, but that's what happened. Colchester had clearly come with a game plan on how to stop Rovers playing their favoured style of game, and it worked well, with the number of goal scoring opportunities for Rovers at a premium.
While starting the game brightly, Rovers struggled to exert any sort of influence on the game as the visitors gradually put pressure on the home defence. Marko Marosi had to pull off a goods save in the first half, then as the fourth official put up the board for added minutes at the end of the first half, Colchester really should have taken the lead, but for a weak header by Chris Porter enabling Marosi to collect the ball. To add insult to injury, Rovers then went down the other end of the field, with a cross in from the right, Marquis dummied by stepping over the ball, enabling Tommy Rowe to slam the ball into the net for a half time lead.
Colchester continued to press after the break, with the Rovers midfield continuing to be stifled by the visitors' intense style, and had the more dangerous of chances.
But Rovers had the best chance after the break, as a clearance out of defence saw John Marquis running on to collect the ball from just inside his own half, taking it all the way to the goal before being forced a little wide, and his shot hitting the base of the post and going out to safety. Colchester pressed Rovers further and further back as the last ten minutes arrived, and while it was a little frantic at times, the home defence managed to hold firm.
October 16, 2016
What the managers said
Boss Darren Ferguson acknowledged that yesterday's performance was probably Rovers' worst of the season, yet was delighted to have taken all three points from a game that Rovers did not, in all fairness, deserve to win.
Speaking after the game, Ferguson told BBC Radio Sheffield: "It was by far our worst performance of the season but that is something we can address and go through thoroughly on Monday. What I said to the players is that when a game is like that, you have to make sure you win it. It makes a much better weekend and Monday morning."
"When you play a game where you are nowhere near the standards you set at times and you lose, it can be a long weekend. We managed to win it, get a clean sheet and it keeps the momentum going. It's 26 points from 13 games, which is fantastic."
He acknowledged: "Colchester will feel hard done by, I'm sure. We were fortunate to win, absolutely. It was a flat performance. Were we due one of those? I don't know. Did we expect it? No. You have to give the opposition credit, they were better than us on the day."
Colchester boss John McGreal was very disappointed not to have won the game at the Keepmoat Stadium, commenting: “I thought we did a number on them today, without getting the result. It’s disappointing not to have scored, after creating so many chances. There are a lot of players feeling very sore at the minute, especially those who missed the chances. Darren (Ferguson) may have said some nice things about us, but that doesn’t make it any easier to take. It still hurts, getting beaten. We put a lot of work into today’s game, and yet we have come away with nothing."
He added: "I thought to a man, even the subs coming on and the changes we made, they were all excellent. The game plan worked to a tee, Doncaster have been flying high. They have been buoyant at home, winning games and people have said we'd be the underdogs coming here. There was not a chance of that happening. We were by far the better team. We've done a real number on them. It does hurt though having been beaten. But we'll address it and move on."
October 16, 2016
Match highlights
Very brief highlights of yesterday's game against Colchester United are now available on the Sky Sports web site.
To access the footage, please click on their logo to the left.
October 16, 2016
Goals review
We begin this week's review of former Doncaster Rovers scoring goals in League One, where Mark Duffy scored one of four Sheffield United goals as they beat Port Vale 4-0 at Bramall Lane.
Down one rung in the league ladder in League Two, Jonathan Forte scored in the 80th minute of Notts County's home game against Crewe Alexandra, only for the opposition to equalise a minute later. The game ended in a 1-1 draw.
One division further down, in the National League, Michael Rankine scored the winning goal for Guiseley as they won at home 2-1 against Southport.
In the National League North, David Syers celebrated his debut game for Darlington 1883 by scoring their final goal in a 5-2 home win over Gainsborough Trinity.
Another step down the divisions saw John McGrath score Mickleover Sports' first goal in their 2-0 home win in the Evo-Stik NPL Premier Division over Corby Town.
October 16, 2016
Whitehouse joins Guiseley on loan
Ex-Rovers youth team striker Billy Whitehouse has joined Guiseley on a three month loan. Billy left Doncaster Rovers in the summer to join Leeds United, and has been playing for their Development squad. However, the 20 year old has been loaned out to get some first team match experience.
Leeds coach Jason Blunt, another ex-Rover, told the Yorkshire Post: “Billy creates chances and his work ethic is good. He is an example for the younger lads in the group. It is not just about technically how good you are, it is about desire, attitude in and around the training ground, manners, the whole package and Billy has it."
October 16, 2016
Pugh extends loan
Young Rovers striker Joe Pugh has extended his loan spell at Hyde United, having had a successful initial month at the club.
Pugh has penned a deal to stay at Hyde, who play in the Evo-Stik NPL First Division North, for a further month, with the news confirmed on the Rovers' Twitter feed on Friday.