Joker Paul Dickov back on top form as Rovers find their feet

James Coppinger's form has been excellent during the four-game unbeaten run. Picture: Steve Uttley.
James Coppinger's form has been excellent during the four-game unbeaten run. Picture: Steve Uttley.
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Paul Dickov was back to his usual cheeky self at the weekend; a sure sign that Rovers have got their season back on track.

The laid back Scot’s sense of humour, his quick wit and very honest appraisals of his team have made his pre and post match commitments both easy and entertaining for assembled media.

Doncaster’s young boss very quickly established a reputation for being a very good speaker, approachable and likeable. Anyone who witnessed his show-stealing performance at last week’s ‘Meet The Owners’ event will vouch for that.

Understandably, his tone and demeanour altered notably as his injury-hit side faltered during the recent nine-game win-less run.

But following Saturday’s well earned draw with Middlesbrough, a fourth consecutive game unbeaten, Dickov returned to his jovial ways.

“I hate to say I told you so, but I told you so,” Dickov quipped, when asked about the impact of players brought in, and those returning from injury.

He was just warming up.

Distracted by some very loud coughing in the corridor outside the press room, he could not resist a one-liner: “Blimey, is he alright out there?”, came the response. Or words to that effect.

When a Teesside-based reporter then suggested the Keepmoat pitch had been responsible for a somewhat scrappy encounter, Dickov jumped straight in. “What yer talking about? Our pitch is fantastic”, Dickov replied with more than a hint of sarcasm.

And his response to referee Andy Davies’ half time withdrawal? “I think he wanted to get away from me and chucked in a calf strain”, he joked.

So it’s fair to say that the mood in the Doncaster camp has been lifted.

In fact that’s an understatement, it’s like a huge weight has been removed not just from Dickov’s shoulders, but the players’ too.

Key men like James Coppinger and Mark Duffy are playing with smiles on their faces again, visibly lifted by the way that the spine of the team has been strengthened in recent weeks.

So it’s no surprise Dickov’s mood has lightened. Rovers appear to be on the up again - and he did tell you so.