DONCASTER ROVERS: Follow the Hird, Deano

Uncertain future: Sam Hird is out of contract with Doncaster Rovers.        Picture: Steve taylor
Uncertain future: Sam Hird is out of contract with Doncaster Rovers. Picture: Steve taylor
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SUPPORTERS Club chairman Len South says Doncaster Rovers boss Dean Saunders will get the chance to prove himself next season despite failing to keep the club in the Championship.

“I know that we were bottom when Dean took over in September, and that we were bottom at the end of the season, but he’ll be given the chance to show what he can do next season by the fans because his hands have been somewhat tied since he’s been here,” said Mr South.

“He’ll be given the opportunity to build a Rovers side which the town, supporters and the directors can be proud of.

“The fans might not like some of the decisions that Dean will make in terms of players he keeps and those he brings in, but that will be for him to decide.

“We know that some players are likely to have to leave to help balance the books but I’m sure that the majority of fans would like to keep the likes of Simon Gillett and George Friend, and I’m sure that a lot of people would like James Coppinger, who has been linked to Ipswich, to stay on.

“I would definitely like to see Sam Hird stay. Playing alongside the likes of Habib Beye has brought the best out of him and he’s been one of the most improved players at the club and I found it quite amazing when he was on the bench.

“I think James Hayter has had a bit of a rough deal and I would like to see him stay on because he can score goals given the right service and played in a position he’s used to.

“Adam Lockwood’s heart and soul is with Rovers and on his day he’s a very good footballer and with his experience I think he’d do exceptionally well in League One.

“Obviously there will be new players coming in and hopefully some of them will add some bite to the side because we were bullied in games quite a few times last season.

“We seemed to get knocked off the ball far too easily at times and we need someone in midfield who is going to get stuck in and hold the ball up and be physically and mentally strong - especially in League One which is likely to be more physical than the Championship.”

The fans chief is confident that Rovers, providing they can at least keep the majority of last season’s squad, can do well in League One next season.

“If Dean, who will benefit from having a good pre-season with the players, can put out a competitive side out then there will be a lot to look forward to next season,” he claimed.

“We’ll be back in the Johnstone Paints Trophy again and it would be nice to get to the final again, especially with it being back at Wembley.

“Who knows? we could also be back at Wembley in the play-offs if we don’t finish in the top two.”