Category Archives: DRSG

Rovers Top 10: Disappointing Signings

Rovers fan, DRSG Committee and anger management failure Rob Johnson writes another top 10 of disappointment and frustrating signings…

I was criticised in some corners for the ‘top ten Rovers villains’ article for focusing on negatives rather than positives. Those naysayers have obviously never heard football writer Nick Hornby’s quote ‘the natural state of the football fan is bitter disappointment, no matter what the score’. With that in mind we bring you a list of players that arrived at Rovers with big expectations only to end up being bobbins. So in no particular order:

  1. Mirsad Bubalovic 1999

1 Game 0 Goals 

Mirsad arrived in the summer of 1999 in a blaze of indifference. People had to sit up and take notice (or stand up and take notice as it would have been then. RIP Belle Vue) when stadium announcer Dave Parker delivered what must go down as one of the all time ill advised proclamations by introducing Bubalovic as ‘the finest player to ever grace Belle Vue’. By default this would instantly put the little known Croatian striker ahead of Alick Jeffrey, Paul Gascoigne and erm… Darren Esdaille. No goals and 3 months later Bubalovic was shipped off to Altrincham before eventually retiring. He tragically died in a car crash in 2010.

  1. Darren Byfield 2008-09

16 Games 0 Goals 

Journeyman striker Darren Byfield arrived at Rovers following our glorious playoff victory over Leeds United on the back of a solid season with Bristol City in which they had reached the Championship playoff final themselves. Byfield had a decent record with Millwall, Gillingham and Rotherham and had been Bristol City’s top scorer the season before albeit with only 8 goals. The fact that he had once captained England on one of my championship manager games only added to my personal excitement.

With an air of inevitably Byfield looked like he could play for a thousand years and never score and after a brief loan spell with Oldham, Byfield was released after one season, 16 appearances and 0 goals.

Indeed Byfields only contribution was the addition of his wife Jamelia to the stands bringing a touch of rare glamour to the Keepmoat crowd.

  1. Abdul Razak 2015

9 Games 0 Goals 

Razak was brought in during the January transfer window of the 2014-15 season as the final piece of the jigsaw to help cement our place in the play offs. Signing Razak was a drawn out affair either because of problems securing international clearance or because Razak kept going in two footed on airport security and giving his passport away to opposition travellers.  Rovers manager Paul Dickov assured us that Razak would be ‘worth the wait’.

Razak eventually arrived in time to feature in the valentine’s day thrashing of Yeovil and looked pretty good by all accounts. He also came on three days later for the 2-1 victory against Oldham. International footballer (!) Razak would taste victory only once more in Rovers colours and after being subbed off inside half an hour against Coventry to prevent being sent off Razak was promptly released after just 9 games.

  1. Gary Williams 1999-2000

16 Games 2 Goals

Williams earned a move up the football ladder after hitting 24 goals in 24 games for Accrington Stanley and was signed for Rovers by Ian Snodin over a pint and a table full of betting slips (probably). Williams managed to do what Byfield and Bubalovic couldn’t by actually scoring a couple, but after 16 games he was sold back to Accrington for £20,000 less than the £50,000 that Rovers shelled out for him. Imagine that lonely trudge back into the Accrington changing rooms and having to face the tea lady who had signed his leaving card only weeks before. Football can be a cruel game…

  1. Adriano Rigoglioso 2003-2006

33 Games 1 Goal 

After promotion to the football league Rovers set about signing the cream of the crop from the conference bringing in Gregg Blundell, Michael McIndoe and Rigoglioso.

Rigo had consistently forged a reputation as a goal scoring midfielder during his time at Morecambe and came with good pedigree having been at Liverpool in his youth.

Unfortunately it all came unstuck for Rigoglioso at Rovers as he managed just 8 starts over two and a half years and only one solitary goal in the Football League Trophy. The goal itself was an absolute belter but unfortunately only 1375 people were there to see it and there is no footage of it available anywhere.

Rigo did a Gary Williams by returning to Morecambe and he never got another chance in the football league again.

  1. Billy Sharp (second spell)

 12 games 4 goals

This is not an attempt at controversy as I think I speak for everyone when I say that Billy Sharp will always be a Rovers legend but there is no denying that his loan spell in our relegation season of 2013-14 ended in bitter disappointment.

Billy arrived as our would be saviour after Rovers have suffered an appalling Christmas period that saw us in the relegation zone. Things started off as expected as Sharp scored the equalizer in his first game back with the tiniest of touches at Blackpool. In his second game Sharp was heavily involved in a 3-0 victory against Charlton in which he won a penalty. Billy then received an uncharacteristic red card away at Brighton but came back strong with goals in consecutive games in home victories against Huddersfield and Watford. He had time for one more moment of glory in a Rovers shirt as he scored in a 2-1 victory against Leeds and Elland Road.

That win left Rovers needing just one more win from the remaining 7 games with the stage set for Sharp to continue his Rovers fairy tale. Alas Rovers managed just one point and Sharps form declined so badly that he didn’t even make it on the pitch for our last stand, away at Leicester until the last five minutes.

4 goals in 12 games isn’t a disaster but nobody wanted to see Billy’s Rovers career end like that.

  1. Carl Alford

17 Games 1 Goals 

After scoring an incredible 42 goals in 39 games for Stevenage, Rovers fans were thrilled when Alford was signed for £50,000 in May 2000. Unfortunately Alford’s goal scoring touch completely abandoned him in spectacular fashion. Despite scoring just once Alford was constantly preferred over the popular Ian Duerdan which resulted in Rovers fans turning on then manager Steve Wignall. Alford looked unfit and uninterested during his entire time at Rovers and nobody was sad to hear of his departure to Yeovil Town apart from local takeaways.

Alford retired having scored only once at Belle Vue. Against Rovers obviously.

  1. Any player involved in ‘The Experiment’

It is impossible to choose just one mercenary from Rovers darkest hour so I have decided to go for all of them. Here is a full list of players that Rovers brought in under evil Sith lord Willie McKay:

Mamadou Bagayoko

Herald Goulon

Habib Beye

Habib Bamogo

Frederic Piquionne

Fabien Robert

Damein Plessis

Pascal Chimbonda

Marc-Antoine Fortune

Herita Ilunga

El Hadji Diouf

Despite having 223 international caps between them they could not prevent Rovers from sliding into league 1 like a turd down the toilet bowl. They all promptly left that Summer and The Experiment caused a rift between Rovers fans that has never properly healed. ‘Disappointing’ doesn’t really being to cover it.

  1. Marc De Val Fernandez 2013-2014

16 Games 0 Goals

Real Madrid to Doncaster Rovers is not a particularly common career move but that is how things turned out for defensive midfielder Marc De Val via a spell with Olimpic Xativa. Rovers fans were understandably excited about the signing of a Spanish centre midfielder and hopes of having signed the next Xavi only increased when footage appeared of De Val scoring a free kick in a reserve game. That was as good as it got for De Val with 16 lacklustre appearances and no goals. Trust Rovers to find the only Spanish centre midfielder with no real technique.

  1. Justin Jackson 2001-2003 

43 Games 5 Goals 

For many if not all Rovers fans, if you had asked who their ideal realistic signing would be back in 2001 the answer would have unanimous. Justin Jackson was undoubtedly the most feared striker outside of the football league hitting 47 goals in two seasons for Morecambe and Rushden & Diamonds. When word filtered through on a Tuesday afternoon that Rovers had signed Jackson and he would start that night against Boston the mood on the travelling coaches was buoyant. This continued as Rovers went 2-0 up only to draw in dramatic fashion following two stoppage time goals from Daryl ‘tears’ Clare. Jackson had played well but missed the big chance that came his way. His opening game would turn out to be a microcosm for his entire spell at Belle Vue.

Plagued by rumours of off field controversy Jackson scored just 5 goals in 43 games for Rovers and was eventually forgotten due to the form of Paul Barnes. Along with Alford and Williams it was Jackson who contributed the most to Belle Vue being known as a ‘strikers graveyard’.

BREAKING NEWS: Thorsten Stuckmann Signs!!!

Thats right, its official, Paul Dickov and his DRFC team have found the pen, blown off the cobwebs and made their first signing of the pre-season!!

Bringing in the towering monster of a keeper Thorsten Stuckmann from Preston North End  we’re aiming to be more assured between the sticks next season. With a growing reputation as a penalty maestro and measuring a dizzying 6ft 6 regardless of ability he’s sure to be a HUGE addition to the squad.

Just don’t take any photos of him stood next to short-man-syndrome Paul Dickov eh?



BLACK BANK: Doncaster Rovers Legends Vote 1948-1960

Who features? You Decide 1879-1948

8 Legends have been short-listed by the Black Bank over a period spanning 12 years, however only one can feature on the Legends Banner (more on the Black Bank website). DRSG Committee member Lee Croft takes a closer look at each candidate and what they achieved whilst at Doncaster Rovers:

Charles Williams 1948-59

Along with Roy Brown of Stoke City, Williams was one of the first black players to play English Football after the war. He was born a Yorkshire man, lived a Yorkshire man, sounded like a Yorkshire man, but just happened to be black. During the war he played football for the Upton colliery team before being signed for Doncaster Rovers, as a natural Centre Back he would go on to make over 170 appearances for the club. He only managed to score once for the Rovers, but with that goal coming against Barnsley (the town where he was born and grew up) it made him a hit on the Belle Vue terraces. After leaving football Williams would go onto become a great comedian and one of the first black comedians to enjoy mainstream success. His routine often found himself making jokes at his own expense and misfortune, but his time at Doncaster Rovers is not to be laughed at. Williams was a cult-hero and legend to many.


Peter Doherty 1948-53

Doherty signed for the Rovers originally as a player-manager in April 1949 for a fee of £8000 from Huddersfield. Even club historian Tony Bluff describes the moment as a “momentous announcement”. He was often a man who would lead from the front and made it clear when he fired Rovers into the lead in their first game under his stewardship against Bradford City at Valley Parade. That would be a sign of things to come as he finished the season with 27 goals in 35 games and guided the Rovers to the Third Division North Championship; earning the Rovers promotion to the Second Division where they would stay for 8 years. For the next couple of seasons Doherty would feature (when not injured) before slowly hanging up his boots in 1953 and becoming manager full time. His record at the Rovers as player was most impressive with 55 goals in a 103 games. His legend status amongst fans would only be cemented further by the success the club continued to enjoy with him as manager, keeping the club in the 2nd Division for 8 years.


Len Graham 1949-58

Until recently Len Graham was the most internationally capped player whilst at the Rovers with his 14 caps for Northern Ireland during this 9 year period. This was beaten recently by none other than Dean Furman. What Deano can’t take away however, is Graham’s incredible record for the club as he went on to join the ‘Club 300’. Graham signed under Doherty’s reign and when Doherty was called upon to manage the Northern Ireland side, Graham would become a regular for the national team as well.  Following Doherty’s resignation and the club’s relegation to the Third Division in 1958, Len Graham left the Rovers and joined Torquay. However he would only make 20 more appearances before going back to Northern Ireland. Graham was an iconic figure for the club in the 50s, an ever present in Doherty’s team and considered one of the greats at DRFC.


Kit Lawlor 1950-54

Like Graham before him, Lawlor was recruited on one of Doherty’s regular trips to Ireland in pre-season tours where the squad often came back larger. Lawlor would become a regular feature in the Rovers line-up throughout his 5 seasons; he notched up 128 league appearances and chipped in with 46 goals. One of his greatest games for the club came at Anfield in August 1954 in the opening game of the season where the Rovers fought gallantly against Liverpool, twice Lawlor put the Rovers in front, with 6 minutes remaining and the Rovers leading 2-1 it would be heartbreak for Lawlor and co and Tony Rowley scored twice to give himself a hatrick, give Liverpool the 3 points and steal the limelight from underneath Lawlor’s feet. It may have been a surprise for many Rovers fans when Lawlor left the club in December to head back for Ireland, however the gap was soon filled as the space left by Lawlor was soon snapped up by 15 year old Alick Jeffrey.


Brian Makepeace 1951-61

It’s a rarity in football for a captain to be a full-back, but Brian Makepeace was the exception. Signing for the club at just 20 years old, local boy Brian would soon rise to lead his home-town club, playing over 350 games for the Rovers throughout Division 2 and the fall into Division 3 from 1958. He is one of the few outfield players to have played so many games for the club without scoring a single league goal. Makepeace’s legacy however reaches far beyond his own era as in 2006 the final ever game to be played on the turf of Belle Vue was Makepeace’s testimonial featuring a fans XI playing against a DRFC XI.


Harry Gregg 1952-57

The ‘Hero of Munich’ is well known to Manchester United fans, one of the key performers under Matt Busby and survivor and rescuer of many during the Munich air disaster. But what isn’t as well documented is Gregg’s career prior to becoming a Busby babe. As with many players during the period, Gregg was recruited by Doherty and comes from across the Irish Sea. Originally an understudy for Hardwick, Gregg would force his way into the first team and in 1954 made a breakthrough to the Northern Ireland national side (in which Doherty was a manager). It is said that Doherty had first seen Gregg play when he was 14 in 1946, and not long after being made manager of the club Doherty made it one of his ambitions to get him to sign. It was also one of Doherty’s last acts of manager to sanction the transfer of Gregg to Manchester United for £23,000. The highest fee ever paid for a goal-keeper at the time. Looking back, you could say we were robbed!


Ron Walker 1952-61

An interesting selection, there is no doubt that during his time with the club Walker became popular and well-remembered, but things didn’t get off to the best starts for him. In his first season he scored 4 goals in his 21 appearances, sadly however in all 4 games Rovers failed to win and only managed a draw in 1. He would have to wait until his 3 goals the following season would follow the same stat as the Rovers drew 2-2 three times against Everton, Oldham and Stoke. He would have to wait until the 26th March 1956 before finally scoring in a game where the Rovers won, which was a 2-1 home win against West Ham United. Alick Jeffrey scoring the other (who else?). Staying with the club throughout the fall from the second to the fourth division and Walker would see himself top goal scorer in both relegation seasons (although only scoring 9, it wasn’t that an impressive feat). When Walker finally left the club in 1961 with nearly 300 league and cup appearances under his belt, it signalled the end of an era for Doncaster Rovers, along with Makepeace he was one of the last stalwarts of the 50s to leave the club. A great servant and a true legend.


Alick Jeffrey 1954-57 & 1963-68

There is perhaps little I can add to the Jeffrey story that isn’t already common knowledge. Even on his first game Alick stole the headlines as he became the youngest player to have played for the Rovers. He quickly became a scorer of some magnificent goals and had the world at his feet. There was no doubt Jeffrey would be a great of the game, it is rumoured that Doherty convincing the teenage to join the Rovers over Matt Busby’s Manchester United set a rift between the two managers that took some time to heal. But Busy did get his man in the end when Jeffrey agreed to sign for the Manchester outfit in 1956, only to break his leg playing for the England Under 23 team. Looking back Jeffrey had no regrets: If I hadn’t had broken my leg, I would have been on that plane [in Munich]. He would go on to sustain another leg break before finally making his comeback (with Skegness Town) and finally returned to the Rovers in the 60’s where he went on to play over 200 games for the club in all competitions in his second stint, scoring over a 100 goals. Many have looked back on Jeffrey as someone who could have been the greatest footballer of his generation. Whether he will be voted as the greatest legend of this era, is yet to be decided.

BLACK BANK: Doncaster Rovers Legends Vote 1879-1948

10 Legends have been short-listed by the Black Bank over a period spanning 69 years, only one can feature on the Legends Banner (more HERE). DRSG Committee member Lee Croft takes a closer look at each candidate and what they achieved whilst at Doncaster Rovers:

Albert Jenkins (1879-1886)

Probably the most famous name connected with Doncaster Rovers in the 19th Century. Albert Jenkins has the honour of being claimed as the founder of Doncaster Rovers. After getting together a makeshift team from the Railway works to play against the Deaf and Dumb school, Jenkins XI found themselves 4-0 down at half time. Somehow they managed to pull it level to 4-4 in the second half, and the story goes that after the game the group of rail workers made their way back to town and stopped at the Hall Cross on South Parade for a breather. It was that moment where Jenkins and his co-workers decided to keep playing football, and chose the name Doncaster Rovers. For that feat alone (never mind being secretary for the club) he has earned his place forever in Rovers folklore.

Walter Langton (1887-1905)

Ahh, good old Walter. The biggest Rovers related mystery of our history (only just beating the signing of Lee Fowler). Despite 18 seasons with the club, Langton is only credited with less than 50 league appearances for the club, the main reason for this is that most of his Rovers career was spent when the club wasn’t part of the Football League and spent its early years playing friendlies before joining the Midland League. Unfortunately none of the appearance or player data was recorded (or at least archived) for these seasons, meaning 16 of Langton’s 18 seasons remain unknown on how many times he played. It is estimated that in total he played around 500 games for the rovers. One thing that isn’t up for debate however is his title of being the longest serving player in Doncaster Rovers history.

Alonzo Drake (1902-03)

Drake joined the Rovers in 1902 in the latter half of our inaugural season as a member of the Football League. He played in the last 13 games of the season scoring 6 goals which saw him go into the next season as a regular. Sadly though the club couldn’t build on the success of the previous season and we’re voted out of the league in favour of Bradford City. Drake was subsequently transferred to Sheffield United. However his legendary status isn’t from being arguably our best player during our first stint in the Football League, as Drake would soon rise in county cricket and 6 years later broke into the Yorkshire first team. His 5 year stint in the Yorkshire side would see him prove to be as good as cricket as he was a footballer, scoring 4800 runs and taking 480 wickets, which included taking 5 wickets and conceding no runs in 1914. Drake is perhaps the only one on the list whose ‘legendary’ status was probably earned after he left DRFC. But for many years following, any discussion around DRFC would often include the young Alonzo Drake.

Tom Keetley (1923-29)

180 goals in 231 matches says it all really. Not only our record goalscorer but also one of the highest goal-to-game ratio ever recorded. 9th in English and Scotland Football with an average of 0.75. Prolific doesn’t do justice to Tom Keetley, a natural finisher? Not quite right. A Goal Machine? Probably doesn’t fit the bill perfectly, but it’s the closest I can find. Keetley also held the record for scoring 6 goals in one match against Ashington. Three of his brothers also played for the club, but only Tom is ever remembered. He was sold to Notts County in 1929 for £750. Just over £4 per goal the club made from him. The transfer record of English football at that time was £10,890, taking in mind Rovers were plying their trade in the Third Division, that wasn’t a bad return at all.

Fred Emery 1924-36

Another strong contender with stats on his side. Emery was and remains (for now) the all time record league appearance holder for Doncaster. Notching up 417 games in his 12 years with the club. After joining the club in 1924 and making a handful of appearances in the 1924/25 season, the 1925/26 season would see him become a regular playing in 38 of the 42 league matches. A few seasons later in 1928-29 he started and played every single game in the season, a feat he would repeat in the 1933/34 season. Considering this was achieved at the age of 34, he was a fans favourite and after hanging up his boots in 1936 he took on the role as manager, with only the second world war forcing him to leave.

George Gladwin 1930-37

Gladwin joined the club in 1930 when the club released most of its players (due to being unable to fund their summer wages) and was originally intended to be a ‘cheaper’ option. Despite this however Gladwin nailed a place in the side and went on to make over 200 appearances for the club. He was part of the DRFC squad that won promotion from the Third Division as Champions in 1934-35. The first title Doncaster Rovers would win after nearly 60 in existent. Gladwin left the club in 1937 for Manchester United, where he stayed for 6 years. Despite this, the only honour he achieved in his career was the league win with the Rovers.

Syd Bycroft 1936-51

I don’t think anyone needs me to explain how Syd’s career went. Probably the most known pre-war Rovers player and definitely legend. A 15 year career that saw him play over 500 times for the club. Sadly he didn’t pass Emery’s record due to the Football League being suspended during World War 2 (at which Bycroft remained at the club playing in the wartime league). The most famous moment of Bycroft’s career was going up against Tommy Lawton of Notts County, with Lawton later recalling to Michael Parkinson that in between kicking lumps out of each other, Bycroft had sold him a set of car tyres. If that wasn’t enough to earn him legendary status, Bycroft was also described by Parkinson of having a tackle like “a beartrap”.

Clarrie Jordan 1940-48

Another one whose stats speak for themselves. Over 60 goals in a hundred games for the Rovers in the wartime league would see Clarrie Jordan earn himself a place in the 1946/47 Third Division North season. With the rest of the country recovering from the war, Clarrie and the Rovers hit the ground running to have arguably our most successful season ever. Jordan’s 42 goals that season helped the Rovers achieve the highest ever points total in a 2 points system with 22 games, as well as earn Jordan a place in Rovers’ history as the most goals scored in one season.

Bert Tindill 1944-58

As with Jordan, Tindill was also credited of playing and helping to fire Rovers to the 1946/47 Third Division Title. He featured in the opening 9 games, and scoring 7 from the right wing made him look a hot prospect. However he was dropped as Jack Kirkaldie was picked over him for the Right Wing position for the rest of the season. 2 years later however, and under manager Peter Doherty, Tindill would become a familiar face in the squad as Doherty’s Rovers won promotion back to the Second Division in 1949 and stayed there for the next 8 seasons. Tindill left the club in 1958 having played alongside legends Doherty, Bycroft, Alick Jeffrey, Clarrie Jordan and with 402 appearances to his name, 366 of them coming under Doherty’s reign makes it hard not to include him in any list of Rovers legends.

Ken Hardwick 1945-57

Like the two before him, Hardwick joined the Rovers at the close of the war and made his debut in the wartime leagues. He was part of the squad during that record breaking season but didn’t become a full regular until the 1948-49 season, once again under Doherty. During what is often referred to as the golden age, Ken Hardwick was the ever reliant man between the sticks. It was a golden age for keepers at DRFC in those days, as his understudy and back up keeper was none other than Harry Gregg who would eventually replace Hardwick as Rovers number 1 before becoming the most expensive keeper at the time. Hardwick left however with 308 appearances and 2 promotions whilst a DRFC player.




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Rob Johnson pens down for us his top 10* Rovers Villains to have been known (and hated) by the Rovers faithful:

*Rob got so angry writing it after 8, fellow Committee Members Wesley Grimes and Lee Croft put forward the case for Cotterill and Dickinson respectively.

I had so much fun writing about Rovers top ten unsung heroes that I thought I would turn my attention to the darker side of our history. Here we have the top ten biggest Rovers villains. The only criteria is that only indiscretions committed whilst not at Rovers will be considered so no “Wanker” Weaver, Ken Richardson or Julie Richardson or Barry Richardson…

In no particular order (except no. 1):

10. Paul Caddis

Unique on this list as he has never actually done anything of note against Rovers directly but indirectly not many people have had more of an effect on our recent history. Rovers went into to the last game away at champions Leicester needing to match or beat Birmingham’s result against Bolton.

Rovers were lacklustre against a Leicester side who seemed to have no desire to score at all until James Husband needlessly scythed down Riyad Mahre in the box with Dave Nugent slotting home the resulting penalty.

With Birmingham 2-0 down at Bolton though it didn’t seem like it was going to matter until news filtered through that Zigic had pulled one back for Birmingham and then the inevitable happened. Another Zigic header was cleared off the line and Paul Caddis, or Paul ‘fucking’ Caddis as he will more likely become known, was on hand to head home a dramatic and sickly equalizer in the third minute of stoppage time. 

9. Chris Moyles

Another last day disaster against Cheltenham Town led to Rovers having to go in to the play offs at the end of the 07/08 season and after crushing Southend 5-1 at the Keepmoat Rovers were poised to play Leeds United in the play off final.

In the run up to the game Moyles had Kaiser Chiefs Ricky Wilson as a guest on his Radio 1 breakfast show. Moyles and Wilson are both Leeds fans and Moyles continually mocked Rovers on the show for our fan base and small ground and other such nonsense.

Moyles ‘big club mentality’ was indicative of the attitude of a lot of Leeds fans at the time which made it that little bit sweeter when Hayter scored his historic winning goal. This incident also led to me starting a Facebook group entitled ‘Chris Moyles is a fat dickhead’. It currently has 353 likes. 

8. Chris Tate

Despite having played against us for Scarborough in our record breaking relegation season out of the football league it wasn’t until the following season that Chris Tate would first become known to Rovers fans.

In October 1999, Tate helped to knock us out of the FA cup by scoring in a 2-0 victory for Halifax. He celebrated in front of the Rovers fans which just confirmed our natural, initial suspicions of Tate as he is the namesake of villainous Chris Tate from Emmerdale .

Less than a month later Rovers fans were surprised to see him bounding around Belle Vue once again with his stupid floppy hair flowing in the wind celebrating the winning goal in a 1-0 win. This time for Scarborough. Then just six days later he played his part in a huge brawl that saw two men sent off, including Rovers Mike Newell, and five players (including Tate) booked. To go from being someone Rovers fans had never heard of to being roundly loathed in the space of less than a month is impressive. 

7. Ronnie Moore

Ronnie Moore is illegitimate, he has got no birth certificate, he’s got AID’s and he can’t get rid of it. He’s a Rotherham bastard. Bastard. Bastard. That is what I was told on the Popular Stand from a young age and I don’t think anyone can argue with some of the great minds who used to assemble there. He is also apparently the owner of a wanker’s hat.

Having played for bitter rivals Rotherham as well as managing them twice Moore is the modern day face of Rotherham United. What an awful face it is. 

6. Daryl Clare

Rovers started the 01/02 season full of confidence and this reached fever pitch when we found out we had signed prolific striker Justin Jackson whilst sat on the coach to Boston. Jackson made his debut that night but Clare stole the show scoring twice in stoppage time to break Rovers hearts after going 2-0 up. Clare angered the Rovers fans that night by celebrating wildly in front of the Rovers support.

The lack of an actual local derby during the conference years led to some curious rivalries developing with the likes of Scarborough, Boston, Rushden & Diamonds and particularly Chester filling the hole left by the lack of trips to Scunthorpe or Rotherham. After the Boston incident Clare again scored against us in the return game at Belle Vue in a 1-0 for Boston before leaving for Chester the following season after struggling for goals in league 2. After playing in a bad tempered game at the Deva Stadium which saw Rovers have two men sent off and losing 1-0 we met Chester City in the playoff semi final.

After two epic games (covered in more detail later) nothing could separate the two sides and the tie went to penalties. Clare hilariously missed his penalty and then preceded to openly burst into tears as Rovers went through despite being second best in both legs. Thus Daryl ‘tears’ Clare was born. 

5. Steve Evans

Evans has managed to escape national notoriety for his continuous appalling behaviour by managing clubs that literally nobody could care less about like Boston, Crawley and Rotherham but his Wikipedia entry reads like a list of ‘how to be a fat tosser‘.

It is difficult to pin point why Evans is so hated by the Rovers faithful but just his mere continued presence on the sideline as manager of Boston appears to be the starting point. He just looks disgusting with his grotesque face which somehow always looks like he is wearing makeup like some nightmarish surreal video of a serial killer clown from the dark web.

The peak of Evans buffoonish behaviour came at the end of this season however as he paraded around in a silly hat following Rotherham avoiding relegation – possibly a wanker’s hat that he borrowed from Ronnie Moore. 

4. Carl Dickinson

Having spent most of his career at Stoke, Dickinson never played against the Rovers much apart from a few shadow appearances whilst at Blackpool and Barnsley. However Dickinson’s reputation with Rovers fans came to prominence in 2011 at Fratton Park. The Rovers of SOD were leading a well deserved Portsmouth side by 3 goals to 2, the Rovers started their usual slick passing with Rovers fans cheering “ole” every-time they touched the ball. James Hayter grabbed the ball on the wing and attempted to cut inside only for Dickinson to come flying in with his studs showing and Hayter, who tried to jump out of the way, still felt the full force of the tackle and collapsed to a heap on the floor.

The Referee rightly showed Dickinson a red card, to which Dickinson reacted disgustingly and came face to face with David Healy who had just scored the winner. He did later apologise for what can only be described as a common assault, but he tried to justify his disgusting reaction by saying Healy reacting only winded him up. 

If that wasn’t enough to make Rovers fans dislike Dickinson, he showed up at the Keepmoat with Port Vale in 2014 and scored to make it 3-0 to the valiants, celebrating in front of the South Stand. In the reverse fixture at Vale Park he found his new target in Nathan Tyson. Surprisingly he managed to knock Tyson to the ground on many occasions and give away 3 or 4 fouls against Tyson without the Ref going to his pocket. To make it even worse he then used his elbow as a tactic of preventing Tyson reaching a loose ball in the Vale Box with the ref allowing play to continue with such criminal behaviour, once again he showed his vile side in front of the Rovers faithful.

3. Steve Cotterill

Steve Cotterill – He’s always been a cretin right back to the Conference days when he managed Cheltenham and the old tale goes that he riled Ian Snodin up to the point where he put his boot through the dressing room door. His teams are taught to play football in the worst way. He’s an anti-O’Driscoll so to speak. Ugly (both on the pitch and facially, see Dave Kitson), overly physical and direct to the point that a Dean Saunders team would look like Brazil. Naturally as with most villains its always been effective as he’s bullied his way out of numerous divisions, trampling on our side every time on their way. He epitomised what a real piece of work he was while at Portsmouth in 2010/11. The referee was a complete disgrace that day as the usual Cotterill line up kicked lumps out of our tippy tappy, slender built side and it was allowed to continue. It came to a head with one of the most blatant red cards (The ref got that one right) you’ve ever seen that Steve Cotterill had the temerity to decide post game that ‘there wasn’t much in it actually’. It wasn’t far off a leg breaker, studs up and foot off the ground.

The other game that season he was enraged and started gobbing off to Olde English gentleman Sean O’Driscoll for a good couple of minutes as the whistle blew. I’ll always remember it in my head as SOD cowering in the dugouts, shaking like a lost puppy, defenceless while Cotterill wildly gestated and shouted till he was literally purple but this may have been exaggerated as years have gone by. 

2. Dave Kitson

Dave Kitson appears to have based his entire career on trolling Rovers fans.There is no player in the modern era who has brought bile to the throats of Rovers fans more often than Dave Kitson. Starting in 2003 when he scored twice at Abbey Stadium for Cambridge in a famous 3-3 draw and ending with his sickening equalizer for Sheff Utd at the Keepmoat in 2013.

I have nothing against ginger hair but there is no need for someone to flaunt it so outrageously as Kitson. This, coupled with his permanent scowl and small beady eyes give him the look of an insidious fox, constantly prowling around in the hope of slaughtering defenceless animals. For fun.

We didn’t meet again until Kitson scored the only goal in a 1-0 defeat at home to Reading and celebrated with his now customary gusto by running round the entire ground. Reports that he continued his celebrations by murdering a small child and drinking their blood remain unconfirmed.

That summer Kitson became Stoke City’s record signing as they inexplicably splashed out 5.5 million to bring him to the Brittania Stadium and in doing so sullied memories of our famous play off final victory there.

Kitson popped up again with a goal at the Keepmoat, this time for Portsmouth in a 2-0 defeat in February 2011, at this point I thought surely that would be the last time… I was very wrong.

The following season Kitson played 35 games and scored a meagre 4 goals. 50% of his return came in two Portsmouth victories against Rovers. The first in a 3-1 loss at Portsmouth and the second in a 4-3 home defeat in which Kitson scored the winning goal after fouling somebody in the run up and handling the ball for another Pompey goal.

In 2013 Kitson scored against us for his fourth different club in the last minute of a 2-2 draw on New Years Day and cupped his pale hands to his disgusting ear as he completed his usual lap of the Keepmoat pitch.

Kitson has scored against us 7 times, for 4 different clubs over 10 years. He has recently signed for non league Arseley Town so his reign of terror might not be over just yet. Expect us to draw them in the FA cup next season…

Kitson might be the Secret Footballer but it is definitely no secret that he is a bell end.

1. Kevin McIntyre

Macca was brought to Rovers by Ian Snodin in 1999 and quickly became a fans favourite for his tough tackling and sweet left foot. After becoming injured at the start of the 01/02 season Rovers continued to pay his wages and offered him a new contract despite him having not played for a year. McIntyre instead opted to abandon Rovers despite the support and good will he had received from both the club and the fans and join bitter rivals Chester City on a free.

Emotions ran high as McIntyre emerged from the player tunnel as a Chester City player for the first time in September of 2002 and was subjected to a torrent of abuse from angry and betrayed Rovers fans throughout the match.

McIntyre also played in the return game which saw two players sent off for Rovers and McIntyre himself booked in a bad tempered game but it wasn’t until the playoff games when things really kicked off.

McIntyre received wave after wave of abuse at Belle Vue in the first leg but he silenced the Rovers fans when putting Chester 1-0 up, only for Tristram Whitman to equalize in the final minute. In the second leg Chester again went 1-0 up only for Paul Barnes to equalize with his tits and although Macca scored in the shoot out he had to face watching Rovers move into the football league while he had to stay in the conference.

There was to be one more twist in the tail as Rovers drew Chester in the League cup the following season and Franny Tierney left Macca on his arse on his way to scoring the only goal in a 1-0 victory, thus further giving the Rovers fans a chance to remind McIntyre what he was missing.

To paraphrase Alan Partridge ‘needless to say, we had the last laugh… now fuck off!’

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DRSG Committee Member and Charity Hero Rob Johnson gives us a Match Review of his experience in the Charity Legends Game:

On 23rd May I was given the glorious opportunity to fulfil a lifelong ambition to play on the Keepmoat pitch – what follows is my account of a surreal but brilliant experience.

After a classic athletes night of preparation (7 pints and a pizza) the night before, I woke up early on the morning of the game to butterflies in my stomach and dreams of scoring in my mind. I was cautiously optimistic despite my head still being a bit fuzzy from the night before and I set off to meet my fellow players at the Earl of Doncaster. On the way I received a text: ‘Right wing. Second half’ I shuddered at the prospect of having to play midfield on such a massive pitch as I glimpsed my beer gut in the reflection of a car window but I was pleased to be playing in the second half rather than having to come off at half time.

I arrived at the Earl and was relieved to see my anxiety and nervousness mirrored on the faces of my teammates as we waited for the coach to take us to the Keepmoat. News filtered through that Darius Vassell had dropped out to be replaced by Mark Draper which made all of us breathe a sigh of relief – particularly the defenders.

When we arrived at the ground we were filmed coming off the coach and friends and family were on hand to give us a cheer as we emerged from the coach, all of us were trying to play it cool but I spectacularly failed at not grinning like a lunatic at the ludicrousness of the situation.

Entering the home dressing room for the first time to see my kit hung up with ‘Johnson 17’ on the back was a huge thrill obviously despite my slight annoyance at been given number 17… I imagined some of the arses that have sat on the bench I was sitting on and all the great players who had strolled victorious into that same room as well as the countless shit players who had trudged in after a defeat and the nerves really started to kick in.

We walked around the pitch in our suits for a bit evoking memories of Liverpool’s ridiculous white suits from the 1995 FA cup final before changing into our training tops for a warm up. Before I knew it we were walking out in our kits and shaking hands with the legends as kick off hurtled ever closer. I literally couldn’t believe how bloody massive Dave Beasant was, my penis shrank inside my body as we shook hands and I was also struck by how much Darren Anderton looked exactly the same as in his Euro 96 heyday.

Charity Heroes Team Photo

The game kicked off and despite our co manager Danny Schofield (ex Huddersfield Town) telling us to take our time and enjoy it, the charity side looked nervous in the first few minutes. Former Arsenal striker Perry Groves must have offended our left back Andy Mankin at some point as he felled him in the box three times in the first half, with referee Andy Butler awarding a penalty for one of them which Rob Pick duly dispatched for 1-0. Darren Anderton smashed home a second from 25 yards which led to my first Anderton inspired semi on of the day and before long the Legends were 3-0 up. The upside of this for me was that the pressure was lessened for those of us playing in the second half as the game seemed to be lost already.

Legends take a storming leaad

From nowhere though a Ryan Becks inspired come back began, starting with a pretty hilarious mix up between Beasant and his defence (don’t tell him I said that) and ending with Adam Myers levelling the game at 3-3 just before half time with a composed finish from Tom Ambler sandwiched in between. The second half team looked at each other with grim faces as the realization kicked in… it matters a lot more now. Shit.

Charity Heroes Hit Back

The second half begun with the charity team swapping all 11 players which meant that I started on the right wing. Everyone had said it was important that your first touch be a positive one and my first pass went without a hitch, it was to someone stood 3 yards away but still a strong start. My second touch was to someone clearly stood offside. My third touch was a shanked cross as was my fourth – a cross so mis-hit it actually looked like a shot. I came worryingly close to curling up in a ball and violently weeping at this point but Danny Schofield took me aside and basically just told me to calm down and I regained focus.

From there the match was a blur of goals, sideways passes (shout out to Mark Wilson) and one glorious crossfield ball from me that led to one of Karl Harrison’s two goals which I spoke about at great length to anyone who would listen for the rest of the night.

Charity Heroes score again

My first abiding memory is of feeling sick with the effort of trying to track Lee Hendrie, looking up at the score board with horror at the realization that only four minutes of the second half had passed. The Legends regained the lead of course, but the charity team fought valiantly and we pegged them back a couple of times before fitness and the outrageous ability of Darren Anderton, Julio Arca and Lee Hendrie started to show. At one point I had a ten yard head start for the ball against a 43 year old Darren Anderton and he just glided past me and stole it away. He looked so handsome as he did it as well. What a guy.

So the game wrapped up with a Dolly Parton approved score line of 9-5 to the Legends team but I will always have THAT 30 yard pass, the knowledge that I merked Phil Babb and hearing my mates chanting ‘you fat bastard’ from the stands.


The Committee of the Doncaster Rovers Supporters Group (DRSG) recently met following the inaugural AGM and decided the following:


The DRSG Committee voted in favour of the fellow members being appointed officers of the Society:

  1. Lee Croft has been appointed Chair
  2. Wesley Grimes has been appointed  Secretary
  3. Neil Taylor has been appointed IT Officer
  4. Lewis Grimes has been appointed Vice-Chair
  5. Rob Johnson has been appointed Officer for PR and Communications
  6. Members without portfolio: Levi Werrett and John Fleming


As the DRSG currently has minimal incoming and outgoing cash-flow, the committee voted in favour of not appointing a treasurer until such a time dictates.

Football Tournament

The DRSG plan to host a football tournament soon, with the aim of raising enough cash to sponsor a player for the 2015/16 season. The DRSG will be entering a side of their own, anyone who is interested in registering their interest to play for the DRSG can email


Hot on the heels of last night’s announcement that Doncaster Rovers centre back Andy Butler is to referee comes news of more former Premier League stars in the shape of former Arsenal striker Perry Groves and ex rover Bruce Dyer.

Despite scoring a paltry 21 goals in 155 games for Arsenal, Groves became something of a cult hero at Arsenal for his work rate and enthusiasm and now has his own fan site and apparently Gunners fans still chant his name. More importantly Groves cult status inspired an ultimately successful campaign from Arsenal fans to push sales of Groves autobiography ahead of Ashley Coles – which is something I am sure we can all get behind.

Groves also played for Southampton and Colchester but it is an Arsenal where he will always be most remembered. He is now currently working as a football pundit on numerous shows but primarily alongside Colin Murray on talkSPORT which I imagine is a terrible experience for Perry.

Speaking of terrible experiences we are also happy to announce the return of Bruce Dyer to the legends game. Dyer played 15 games for Rovers in the 06-07 season scoring one solitary goal in a spell that is perhaps best remembered for his penalty misses in the same game albeit in pre season friendly with Middlesbrough. Much more successful was the time spent at Crystal Palace and Barnsley which saw Dyer hit over 100 league goals in 9 years.

The Charity Legends Game will be taking place at the KeepmoatStadium on Saturday 23rd May with a team of Football Legends going up against a team of a team of charity fundraisers, mostly made up of school teachers representing their academies, colleges and schools. Tickets are priced at £5 for Adults and £3 for Children. Family Tickets (2 adults and 2 children) are available for just £10 and if that wasn’t all; DRFC fans can save 50% off with their DRFC Season Ticket.

Charity Legends Game Poster

WIN 2 VIP Charity Legends Game Tickets

This Saturday, the 3rd annual “Charity Legends Game” will take place at the Keepmoat Stadium, with a Legends team starring already announced Dave Beasant, Lee Hendrie, Des Walker and Darius Vassell will take on a team of local Charity Heroes. The Doncaster Rovers Supporters Group have a pair of VIP Match Tickets to give away to one lucky fan. 

The VIP Match Experience will include:

  • Access to an Open Bar
  • Pre-Game Entertainment
  • Post Game Meal
  • A Chance to meet the Legends and Charity Heroes
  • Auction to a Match Worn Shirt
  • Entry into a  VIP Raffle
  • Central Seating for the game

All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is by entering our “Caption Competiton” on our Forum HERE and submit your caption before Wednesday 20th May 2015 at 19:30.

The winner will be selected by representatives of both the DRSG Committee and the Eve Merton Dreams Trust.

Eves Dreams Trust was set up in 2011 by Martin Lawrence & Clynton Johnson. It is a non profit organisation that donates the money it raises to help create a dream for a terminally or seriously ill cancer patient in the Doncaster area which is why so many local people are very passionate about this charity which has enabled brilliant events like the legends games, the dragon boat race, poker nights and an evening with Paul Merson.

The Charity Legends Game will be taking place at the Keepmoat Stadium on Saturday 23rd May with a team of Football Legends going up against a team of a team of charity fundraisers, mostly made up of school teachers representing their academies, colleges and schools. Tickets are priced at £5 for Adults and £3 for Children. Family Tickets (2 adults and 2 children) are available for just £10 and if that wasn’t all; DRFC fans can save 50% off with their DRFC Season Ticket.

Charity Legends Game Poster