James Coppinger: Current Doncaster Rovers side ‘has same qualities as Sean O’Driscoll’s team’

James Coppinger
James Coppinger

Who better placed to judge the aesthetic merits of the current Doncaster Rovers side than James Coppinger?

After all, the veteran midfielder was a key component of a team affectionately known as ‘the Arsenal of the Championship’ during the much-lauded Sean O’Driscoll years.

Known for their brilliant possession play, O’Driscoll’s side consistently punched above their weight after an incredible rise into the second tier.

The current Rovers side may have a way to go to match such achievements but, under Darren Ferguson, they are playing their football in a comparative way.

And Coppinger can see the similarities with the Rovers team of the past.

“It’s a team that has the same sort of attributes and things going on that those teams did have,” he told the Free Press.

“We’ve got a lot of quality in the team.

“We’ve also got that willingness to get better.

“On the training pitch people are doing extra after training, they’re in the gym.

“People are pulling each other aside, trying to make each other better.

“The staff can’t do enough for you.

“Hopefully things will go from strength to strength between now and the end of the season.”

During sections of their win at Barnet last weekend, Rovers played sensational passing football.

Ferguson afterwards called on his team to show more confidence, even arrogance, in possession and recognise just how good a side they are as League Two leaders.

And Coppinger is confident the squad will continue to grow in confidence as the season wears on.

He said: “It’s a belief in where we are.

“We’re top of the league and we’re there for a reason.

“For me we’re the best team in this division and we’re showing it every week.

“To have that little bit of arrogance and confidence on the pitch is massive.

“It breeds throughout the team.

“It’s important we grow as a team, not just stand still, and get better throughout the season.”