Bubbly Rovers manager shows his serious side

Rovers hopefuls: Centre of excellence members are joined at their training session by George Friend, Kyle Bennett, Pascal Chimbonda and Simon Gillett.      Picture: steve taylor

Rovers hopefuls: Centre of excellence members are joined at their training session by George Friend, Kyle Bennett, Pascal Chimbonda and Simon Gillett. Picture: steve taylor

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DEAN Saunders is unashamedly a bubbly character.

The outgoing Welshman has lifted morale at Doncaster Rovers in his three matches in charge and inspired a mini revival at the Keepmoat Stadium.

Saunders, a former Welsh international who played for clubs including Liverpool, Sheffield United and Bradford City, has made a bright start to his stewardship, with Rovers having secured seven points from a possible nine.

While he is up for a laugh and a joke, there is a serious edge to Saunders.

He said: “I want to come in and enjoy training every day and I do but I am as serious as the next manager when it comes to being organised and disciplined.

“Without discipline, you’ve got nothing whatever job you are working. Even in your job, if you’ve got three or four of you trying to do one job and one is not turning up on time, it is killing the rest of you. It is the same in football.

“We have to have discipline at the club or we have nothing at all.

“I’m quite hard on that and on the organisation of things and getting all the little details right. I say to the players I don’t want teams to take throw ins against us without us being ready and organised for it.

“I enjoy having a laugh in training but there is a serious side to it. I have told them once we start working, we are working.”

The two-week international break has enabled Saunders to fine tune one or two areas of his injury-ravaged squad in training.

The Welshman, who ran the rule over some of the schoolboys on the club’s books when he took a specially arranged coaching session at the centre of excellence on Monday, said: “The lads have taken on board what I have asked them to do. If they are enjoying it that is great but it is all about winning. If they are not enjoying it and we are winning I would be happy with that.

“I am here to try and get results for the club and get us up the league.”

While glad to have worked with his new squad in training during the enforced break, Saunders has stated he would have liked the opportunity to keep Rovers improved form going.

He said: “I wish we had another game really because you want to keep it going when you are winning.

“On the other side, I wanted to get into the players and have some stiff training sessions where I could put on what on I want. It is not rocket science. I will get the players organised as long as they put the effort in.

“I want them to show me the desire, determination and that they want to win.

“Looking at the Peterborough game, George Friend and Brian Stock threw themselves in front of shots. That shows me they have got a little bit of desire and determination.”

After beating Manchester United in a behind closed doors practice match last week, Saunders gave his players the weekend off to rest-up in preparation for the Yorkshire derby with Leeds United in two days time.