Doncaster Rovers: Spaniard must bide his time

Marc De Val Fernandez played a full game for Rovers' reserves and is looking stronger, says Paul Dickov
Marc De Val Fernandez played a full game for Rovers' reserves and is looking stronger, says Paul Dickov
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Mark De Val Fernandez will have to bide his time for first team football - as he continues to come to terms with swapping Spain for South Yorkshire.

Paul Dickov is a huge fan of the 23-year-old and his return to fitness has provided a welcome boost during the recent glut of injuries.

Rovers’ boss is monitoring Fernandez’s progress carefully - and after bemoaning his side’s use of the ball against Barnsley, the Spaniard’s ability to keep possession and keep things simple will stand him in good stead.

But Dickov has hinted that the former Real Madrid B star - who suffered knee ligament damage against Motherwell in pre-season - will have to be patient in his bid to break into the team.

“With Mark it’s not just about his injury but it has been a massive cultural change for him as well - from his eating habits to his training habits to everything else,” said Dickov. “It was disappointing when he got his injury because he had struggled in the early part of pre-season but he was just starting to come good.

“He’s got himself back fit now, and is starting to come good again.”

Fernandez made his return to action for the reserves last month and played the full 90 minutes in last week’s 2-1 defeat at Hull City.

“He was a lot better the other night,” said Dickov.

“He was pleased to get 90 minutes under his belt and I was delighted.”

Fernandez’s return means midfield is the one area Dickov is well stocked.

He hopes to bolster his defensive and attacking options before Friday night’s televised visit of Yeovil.