John Buckley: Middle man McCullough’s had central role in form U-turn

Luke McCullough
Luke McCullough
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Doncaster Rovers’ diamond suddenly looks a lot more edgier.

The midfield unit has really shone in the last few games and it’s one of the reasons why the form has been turned on its head.

Tommy Rowe has made a big difference. He looks like a machine. It took him a bit of time to get up to speed but you can see what’s he all about now, he can get after people high up the pitch, run with the ball and he makes good runs into the box too.

For me, though, the difference has been Luke McCullough.

Darren Ferguson said after the win over Coventry when you play a diamond you need to have the right players in there. He’s got that at the moment. And, in McCullough, Rovers have someone bang in form at the base of it.

If you’re a scout watching Rovers over the last few games you’ll have come away thinking this boy can really play. He’s controlling everything, and he looks totally at ease.

My one concern about Luke when he plays at centre back is that he can get done for pace. But playing in front of the back four that’s not an issue, and he has both the brain to get into the right positions and also the quick feet to go either short or long.

When you play in centre midfield it’s all about making the right decisions and at the moment he’s doing just that.

Rovers are now playing like they did when Ferguson first came in, and it’s really hard to explain when you see them put in performances like the ones against Wigan and Coventry why they went for so long without winning. You hear of people getting ‘the yips’ in individual sports and it’s a bit like that - it becomes harder and harder to break the cycle the longer it goes on.

Fingers crossed Rovers can continue where they left off on Saturday at Crewe. You have to fancy them to win there but the problem is whether other teams will slip up. The one team that has momentum down there though is Rovers, so you just never know.

Bucky’s charity bet: Crewe 0 Rovers 3