Countdown to Next Match
by Rich Colby
Another Saturday in South Yorkshire sees Rovers face high flying Chesterfield at the Keepmoat Stadium. The hosts form has been patchy at best so far this season, but Rovers went a little way into stopping the rot with a draw against Crawley on Tuesday evening.
Rovers have no new fresh injury concerns. Harry Forrester will serve the second of his two match ban. The midfield master was sent off for the second time this season last Saturday against Bristol City. Curtis main remains sidelined, as does club captain Rob Jones.
Chesterfield seem to have had a season exactly the opposite to Rovers so far. Confidence is flowing through the side, and there is extra incentive for striker Eoin Doyle to well at the Keepmoat Stadium. The Spireites hit man aims to score his third hat-trick in successive matches, a feat only seven other men have ever produced in the football league. Obviously, he will be the man to watch for the opposition.
Rovers are badly in need of a boost to kick start their season again. And what better way than to defeat some local rivals on a Saturday afternoon?
Come on you reds!
Overall record Vs Chesterfield P 90/W 26/D 29/L 35
The VSC met with the club recently and the most important point on both our agendas was our fan engagement programme 'In Rovers We Trust'. The upheaval in the summer is now out of the way, the club has a squad that looks pretty much complete, and we have appointed a Chairman to oversee all club issues. It was very encouraging from our newly appointed Chairman, David Blunt, to read that, "I'm also keen to invigorate ‘In Rovers We Trust’, and it is now time to step up our approach.
As most of you are aware IRWT has delivered a range of successful projects since the club and the VSC introduced this programme a couple of seasons ago. IRWT has received international acclaim for its broad reach and a desire to achieve results that reflect what our club values most; that is the supporters are at the heart of all that we do!
It was apparent from our meeting that we both feel the same way, that now is the right time to push forward and we have set ourselves some ambitious targets for the next few weeks. We also have some game changing ideas that will need a lot of thought and consideration and which may take some considerable time to reach fruition. But that’s for another day.
To begin with we’re covering territory that we began with all those months ago. We've agreed another survey to attempt to 'test the water' and see how people feel about their experiences as a Doncaster Rovers supporter; we'd like to emphasise the positives and then try to eliminate the negatives. When we first began we set up a couple of fan panels but they had a short shelf life, so we’d like to try that again. Furthermore we shall be looking at the events that impact on supporters and help to create a satisfactory outcome for those involved.
So, our short term aims will be:
• New IRWT Survey
o Where are we?
o What does it mean to supporters?
o What should be the priorities?
• Fan Panels
o Encourage new participants
o Match day atmosphere, what can we achieve?
o Ticket pricing and match day promotion, how can we help?
• Consultation with supporters
o Examples would be the new scoreboard
o Can we learn lessons?
o How will it benefit DRFC supporters?
o Are there issues with moving supporters and how can we resolve that?
So, some ambitious targets to get the next phase of IRWT underway. We will need the help of all supporters and all age groups. If you would really like to help then please volunteer for the fan panels. As usual we should have our friend Mark Bradley helping out with those. For supporters who attend the ‘Meet the Owners’ events you’ll recognise him as the Sunderland supporter!
Once again we are pleased that this partnership between DRFC and the VSC delivered so much the last time we set out on this journey - the club achieved promotion and a bagful of positives - let's hope for a similar outcome once again.
by Rich Colby
After what can probably be described as Rovers best performance of the season so far on Tuesday, Rovers will be looking to try and emulate their away form at home for the visit of Oldham Athletic.
After changing the side up a little bit against Watford, Paul Dickov officially has a selection headache. But for once its a good one; Harry Forrester has now completed his 3 game suspension and is available for selection, Rob Jones and Jamie McCombe are also possibly available along with the biggest surprise of Tuesday night in Richie Wellens.
Wellens and Paul Dickov appear to have built bridges over the last week, and the influential midfielder has been rewarded with a new 2 year contract. Another man who has earned a fully deserved 3 year deal is Paul Keegan.
Oldham Athletic come into the game still looking for their first win of the season after last weekends defeat to Preston North End. Rovers will need to be on guard to stop former employee Jonathan Forte getting on the score sheet. Having already netted 3 times this season he is my man to watch for them.
Paul Dickov will demand Rovers don't rest on their laurels against his former team. He'll be looking for the full 3 points from this one before a 2 week break due the international weekend at the beginning of September. Hopefully, come 5pm, Rovers will be occupying a place in the top 6 of the league table.
Come on you reds!
Overall Record Vs Oldham Athletic: P 37 / W 16 / D 14 / L 7