Doncaster Rovers: Ferguson urges defender to show the Wright stuff

Joe Wright
Joe Wright

Joe Wright has been urged to go back to basics as he attempts to secure a regular starting berth in the Rovers defence.

With Mathieu Baudry out of action for another month, boss Darren Ferguson opted for Wright to partner Andy Butler in the heart of the Rovers back line for last weekend’s opening day clash with Gillingham.

Ferguson had been hunting for an experienced and imposing centre half this summer but cooled his search after failing to uncover suitable and affordable targets.

While 22-year-old Wright may be lacking in experience terms, Ferguson has called upon him to provide the imposing characteristics.

“With Joe, I think it’s a case of him going back to basics,” Ferguson told the Free Press. “Head it, kick it, defend. Keep the ball out of the box and when it comes into the box, get it out of there.

“Joe is not Mathieu Baudry. He’s a different sort of player.

“For Joe, he just needs to be consistent.”

Ferguson admitted he thought long and hard about his selection and formation for the Gillingham clash before eventually opting for a 4-4-2 with a diamond midfield.

And he praised Wright’s part in a disciplined defensive performance.

He said: “It was a difficult decision and I had a couple of conversations with Joe.

“We looked at playing three at the back but we felt that the four was the right system to play against Gillingham.

“Craig Alcock is probably not up to speed because he missed a couple of games in pre-season.

“I just felt with the two they had up front that it was the right two to go with.

“With Joe, I felt he was good. He didn’t let anyone down. He was very good actually.”

Ferguson offered further support for club captain Butler and backed him to perform in League One as well as he did in League Two last term.

He said: “I think you know what you’re going to get off Andy Butler.

“He was excellent last season. He knows this division very well and he should cope with it no problem.”