JAMES Hayter has an added incentive when Rovers aim to end their rotten form at home to Burnley next week.
The hard-working forward spent more than a year renting a room off new Clarets boss Eddie Howe when the pair played together at Bournemouth.
Highly-rated Howe, 33, could really turn up the heat on Rovers should he continue his impressive start in charge at Turf Moor and extend Doncaster’s six-game sequence without a win.
While for Hayter next Tuesday’s reunion at the Keepmoat is a chance to turn the tables on his former landlord - and make him pay!
“I know Eddie well from the time we used to play in the youth team together at Bournemouth,” said Hayter.
“When he made it as a pro he bought a flat and I ended up renting a room off him for about a year.
“We’ve been on holidays together and we know each other really well.
“We’re still in contact now and it’ll be nice to catch up with him again next week - but it’s vital we get a result of some description.
“Eddie’s done brilliantly in management since he got his chance with Bournemouth and now he’s moved to Burnley and it’s a big opportunity for him.
“It’s not surprising that he ended up going into coaching because he was always analysing his performances and very thorough in everything he did.
“He was always very studious and looked at things in a different perspective.
“What is a surprise is how quickly it’s happened for him.
“But he’s a nice bloke and I wish him all the best - although that goes out of the window next week.”
Hayter cast a downbeat figure trudging off the field after Tuesday night’s woeful 2-0 defeat to rivals Barnsley.
The nine-goal frontman hardly had a sight of goal as his side huffed and puffed with little effect - before losing to two sloppy second half strikes.
It’s a recurring second half syndrome that just refuses to go away.
And it’s a pattern that Hayter and his team-mates are well aware of.
“I can’t really put my finger on why it’s happening,” he said.
“We looked quite solid in the first half on Tuesday night and played quite well.
“We had the better of the chances and then we conceded a poor goal from our point of view.
“With the way things have been going recently it seems to rattle us when we concede.
“We’re giving away poor goals at the moment - and it’s something we need to eradicate as a whole team.
“The quicker we do that the better because we need to start picking up some points.
“Defending is down to the whole team and it’s something we’ll be working hard at on the training ground.
“At Ipswich on Saturday we conceded a couple from set pieces and it’s everyone’s responsibility to defend those.
“We win as a team and we lose as a team.
“It’s up to all of us to help each other out and get out of the rut we’re in.”
Rovers’ long list of injury absentees, including midfield trio Brian Stock, Martin Woods and Simon Gillett, has hardly helped matters.
But Hayter refuses to go down the line of blaming injuries for a win-less streak stretching back to the 3-0 New Year’s Day demolition of Scunthorpe.
“We’ve got quite a big injury list but I’m sure it’s the same for a lot of other teams,” he said.
“You know you’re going to get a period in the season when you get hit by injuries and suspensions - and they seem to be all coming at once for us.
“The sooner we can get a few back the better.
“But the team we’re putting out at the moment is more than capable of winning matches.
“We’re disappointed with the way results have gone lately,” he added.
“But we just have to work hard in training and get back to basics.
“We need to eradicate the goals we’re conceding.
“At least we’re still creating chances and scoring goals.
“Obviously we went to Ipswich and scored a couple and although we didn’t make as many chances on Tuesday the keeper made a good save from Billy in the first half and if that goes in it changes the game.
“Earlier in the season we were conceding goals but scoring more than the opposition so it wasn’t too bad.
“The sooner we can cut out the mistakes the better for everyone - it’d be nice to just have to score one to win a game.
“At least having Saturday off it gives us a bit of time.
“Tuesday night was our fourth game in ten days so at least it gives us a bit of time on the training ground - and then we’ll be looking to put things right against Burnley.”