Liam Hoden's Doncaster Rovers column: The very simple question the board need to answer
'Certainly for me we have to keep progressing as a football club and not stand still.'
Darren Feguson has spoken a lot about progression for Doncaster Rovers over the last couple of weeks.
And it has become apparent he is not just throwing around sound bites. It certainly seems as though he is sending a message.
Whoever you believe the Rovers boss is directing his message at, there is a group of people that should definitely be listening.
At this stage, there is no entity holding more influence over potential progression of the club than the holders of the purse strings at the Keepmoat.
Ferguson has delivered on his remit this season – to consolidate back in League One.
And regardless of how underwhelming results in general may have been, it is clear he has constructed and improved a young squad with bags of potential.
But potential will only take you so far in a division where the overall financial might only increases year on year.
It is the harsh reality of modern football that if you want to succeed, you have to spend.
I wouldn’t advocate for one second a club the size of Rovers throwing tons of money around in the chase for success.
But I also don’t believe that needs to be the case for Rovers to compete for a place in the top six.
A loosening of the purse strings would suffice. But not doing so would stop progress in its tracks.
The current Rovers squad does not require revolution. And it is taking care of its own evolution.
But it needs help along the way.
It is clear where Rovers have come up a little short this season. Goals have not been nearly plentiful enough. And there are times when an injection of experience would have served them well.
Goals and experience cost. But Ferguson has shown in his decade of experience in management that he is a shrewd enough operator when it comes to the transfer market to not spend unnecessarily.
The much talked about but less publicised five year plan is to not only reach the Championship but for Rovers to establish themselves in the division.
Ferguson and his staff have constructed a fantastic foundation to make that happen but they need help putting significant building blocks in place.
The question that the Rovers board must ask themselves as they prepare to hand Ferguson his finalised budget is quite simple.
How much do you really want Rovers to progress next season?