Former Doncaster Free Press editor 'absolutely delighted' after landing Doncaster Rovers job

A former editor of the Doncaster Free Press has said he is ‘absolutely delighted’ after being appointed media manager of Doncaster Rovers.

By Darren Burke
Thursday, 3rd March 2022, 11:10 am

Liam Hoden, who stood down as editor of the newspaper last month, has wasted no time in landing the new role which will see him covering Doncaster Rovers and Club Doncaster both on and off the field.

And he will be no stranger to the Eco Power Stadium, having covered the fortunes of Rovers as football correspondent for the Free Press, a role he held for a decade and which he later combined with editorship of the newspaper.

He replaces former media manager Hayley Ford who recently left the club to take up a new job in Championship football.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Former Free Press editor Liam Hoden has been appointed Doncaster Rovers' media manager.

Announcing his arrival on Twitter, Liam said: “Absolutely delighted to have joined a brilliant new-look team as media manager of Doncaster Rovers and Club Doncaster. I know I've got massive shoes to fill with the superb work that Hayley did during her time with the club.

"Rovers have certainly got their claws into me over the last decade and I'm very much looking forward to seeing what life is like on the other side of the fence.”

And taking a swipe at supporters critical of his coverage of the club for the Free Press, he added: “And for those ready to type that I've been club spokesperson for years, congratulations on your tremendous wit.”

Chief operating officer Shaun Lockwood said: “Unfortunately we lost Hayley, who has moved onto pastures new - genuinely gutted she has been one of the best people I've ever worked with.

"However I'm delighted that her replacement Liam Hoden has started with us today.”

Liam will be joining iFollow commentator Robbie Andrews who has become digital content manager and Dan Breslin who has joined the team full-time.

He added: “Now the only thing to decide is with the new personnel should we play 3 at the back or 4?????”

Liam stood down as editor of the DFP last month after a ten month stint in charge and following 15 years with the newspaper’s owner, JPIMedia.

In February he wrote: “The last ten months as editor of the Free Press has been an honour and I’ll wear that ex-editor badge with pride for the rest of my life. The team I’ve had the privilege of leading have been incredible and I wish all of them the very best for the future.

“We were determined to bring the Free Press back to Doncaster and restore it as the voice of the people of the borough. I believe we’ve made a good go at that, and the remaining team will continue to give their all to deliver the best coverage for Doncaster.

“I dreamed of writing about football from a young age and I’ve had the privilege of doing that for 14 years, with the last decade spent covering #drfc. I couldn’t have wished for a better club to have the honour of following up and down the country as well as day in, day out.”

Liam singled out former Sheffield Star sports editor Bob Westerdale and former Free Press deputy editor Kath Finlay among the journalists who had helped shape his career.

He wrote: “There have been some amazing people that have guided and helped me and I’ll forever be thankful. I have to give special mention to those that showed real belief and trust in me along the way, namely Bob Westerdale, Kath Finlay and, of course, my mentor and friend Peter Catt (former Doncaster Free Press sports editor and long-standing Doncaster Rovers journalist).

“I’ve worked with dozens of people and made some incredible friends – in particular the sports lads at The Star, past and present, my long time workmate Paul Goodwin, plus some special people at the Free Press over the years – people who never get/got the credit they deserve.

“It’s been a job that’s introduced me to some incredible people and afforded me wonderful opportunities. Walking away from it was not an easy decision at all but I’m excited for the future, especially giving some more time to the most understanding family I’m so lucky to have.”

The remaining Free Press team includes senior reporters Stephanie Bateman and Darren Burke, local democracy reporter George Torr, sports reporter Paul Goodwin, who has picked up the mantle of Doncaster Rovers’ writer and search and trends writer Jimmy Johnson.