Doncaster Rovers: Hunt is on for someone to take physical burden off John Marquis

Doncaster Rovers are looking to add a physical presence to their front line to take the heat off John Marquis, Gavin Strachan has revealed.

Tuesday, 8th May 2018, 8:30 pm
John Marquis

Marquis was among the walking wounded at the club towards the end of the season with both the player himself and manager Darren Ferguson admitting he ought to have been rested in games towards the end of the campaign.

Assistant boss Strachan says taking bumps and bruises was too much a part of Marquis’ job in the most recent campaign.

And says there is a desire to ease the physical burden on the 25-year-old, which he hopes will be addressed in the summer transfer window.

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“Hopefully we can bring in players that will be improve the shortcomings that we’ve had this season,” Strachan told The Star.

“The last few games have highlighted that we need a bit more help in the goalscoring area.

“I think we need to give John Marquis more help in terms of taking off the goal burden and also the physical burden as well.

“A lot gets put on him and he’s taken a heck of a lot of beatings this season.

“We need to try to help him out in that area.”

When asked whether that would involve the signing of a physical striker, Strachan added: “I think it’s a fair assumption.

“It’d be someone who still fits in to how we want to play – someone mobile, who tries to put pressure on the ball higher up the pitch, who’ll run in behind.

“But there aren’t that many who tick all of those boxes out there.

“We’ve got a few in mind and fingers crossed we can try to get them over the line.”

On the general focus for summer transfer business, Strachan says improving the squad is key.

But, reiterating a previous assertion from boss Ferguson, his assistant says Rovers are likely to be operating with a small squad next season which means versatility in players will be vital.

“We need to just try to upgrade in any areas we can, try to get the best we can that helps with the balance of the squad,” Strachan said.

“It’s not going to be a huge squad.

“We don’t like working with a huge squad. We like players who can play in a couple of different positions.

“We’ve found the smaller squads keep players hungry and motivated.”

Reports in Gloucestershire suggest Cheltenham Town are tracking Andy Williams, who has been released by Rovers.

Williams was released by Cheltenham as a schoolboy but could return to the League Two side to team up with boss Gary Johnson, who was his manager at Yeovil Town.