Former Doncaster Rovers midfielder says Darren Ferguson needs a good budget to progress club

Paul Keegan
Paul Keegan
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Darren Ferguson will need a good budget if he is to set Doncaster Rovers on a push towards the upper reaches of League One next season.

That is the verdict of former Rovers midfielder Paul Keegan who believes Rovers need additional quality in their side if they are to progress following their first season back in the third tier.

Keegan was reflecting on his six years with Rovers on a podcast in his native Ireland.

“I keep an eye on how they’re getting on,” he told LOI Weekly. “There’s still a few guys there I know.

“They’ve finished up mid-table this season and let a few lads go.

“They want to add a bit of quality to take that next step up again.

“Darren Ferguson is a good manager. I think he knows what he wants to do.

“He’s a genuine enough fella. He wants to do the right thing by the players.

“I think if he gets a bit of a budget he’ll be able to add some quality in there.

“But I do think they’re missing some players to take that step up.”

Keegan – now playing in the League of Ireland for Waterford – says he enjoyed his 18 months working under Ferguson.

But the 33-year-old admitted Ferguson’s training methods require some acclimatisation.

“He’s very good,” Keegan said. “He’s honest, like.

“If something is not right or something needs doing, he’d take the money out of his own pocket.

“He works hard. He’ll tell you the truth.

“He does a lot of shape work. You’d have to drag a five-a-side out of him. He doesn’t believe in playing games.

“He wants to do shape, shape, shape.

“It’s a hard one. People want to play and enjoy it, run about in training.

“But he’s more concerned about positional sense around the pitch, where you should and shouldn’t be.

“He’s more of a coach really than a manager.”

Keegan made 145 appearances for Rovers after being signed by Sean O’Driscoll from Bohemians in January 2011.

He was released last summer by Ferguson and subsequently joined Waterford.

To listen to the episode of LOI Weekly on which he features, click HERE.