Doncaster Rovers: Old boy Gareth Roberts’ tribute to former boss and new Liverpool assistant manager Sean O’Driscoll

Sean O'Driscoll
Sean O'Driscoll
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Gareth Roberts has provided a fascinating insight into the training-ground methods of former Doncaster Rovers boss Sean O’Driscoll.

O’Driscoll, who guided Doncaster to the Championship in 2008, has been confirmed as Brendan Rodgers’ new assistant manager at Liverpool.

And ex-Rovers left-back Roberts has sounded a glowing tribute to the former Bournemouth, Nottingham Forest and Bristol City manager, who he played under at the Keepmoat Stadium.

“He is a 100% football man who lives and breathes the game, 24 hours a day,” Roberts told the Liverpool Echo.

“He was the best manager I played for, and I played under quite a few.

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“There is no doubt he made me a better player.

“He’s different class on the training ground. He makes you think at every stage of a training session.

“Everything he does is designed to make you think, to improve you as a player and to improve you as a person.

“The sessions are always plotted through the week with a focus on the match at the weekend. He tailors what you do to focus on the weak points of the opposition on a Saturday.”

Citing one example from the training pitch, Roberts continued: “He would split the group of players into two teams and call one person from each side over to tell them rules of the game about to be played.

“Then he would tell them they have 30 seconds to tell the rest of the team the rules before the match started. It was all about developing communication skills among the players, making them better at passing information on to each other on the pitch.

“He’s a top guy and he deserves this chance. I wish him all the best.”

Roberts, aged 37, recently signed for Stockport County.