Adam Long: Doncaster Rovers sign Wigan Athletic defender on two-year deal

Doncaster Rovers boss Gary McSheffrey has boosted his options in central defence with the signing of Wigan Athletic’s Adam Long.

Sunday, 17th July 2022, 10:02 am

The 21-year-old has penned a two-year deal after joining for an undisclosed fee and will help fill the void left by captain Tom Anderson, who will miss the start of the season.

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Long made his Wigan debut in the EFL Trophy aged 16 and went on to make a further 23 senior appearances for the club.

Doncaster Rovers have signed centre-back Adam Long. Photo: Heather King/DRFC.

He was a regular for the Latics’ under-23 side and played four times for Notts County in the National League during the 2019/20 season before his stay was cut short by the coronavirus pandemic.

McSheffrey said: “He’s young so there’s no guarantee he comes straight in.

"He’s got to earn the right to play, but he gives us real good options and good strength in that position.”

Long featured 11 times for Wigan in League One during the 2019/20 campaign before falling back down the pecking order at the DW Stadium.

Adam Long has joined Doncaster Rovers from Wigan Athletic. Photo: Bernard Platt.

McSheffrey added: "He’s had first-team experience and then all of a sudden from nowhere you’re back in the 23s and you just get lost a little bit in that system.

"Wigan went on to win the league so it was hard to get in. Sometimes you just need that fresh start. I have been there as a kid, I played at 16 then didn’t have a first-team game for two years.”

He continued: "There’s always different reasons for it but ultimately, regardless of what’s gone on, if it’s good or bad, he’s got potential.

“He ticks the boxes of the profile we want in a left-footed centre-back and it’s up to us now to get him up to speed and out on the pitch having a good season for us.”

Long is the only one of five centre-backs on Doncaster’s books who is left-footed and will offer more balance to the side – something McSheffrey was keen to address, albeit not in a hurry.

A central defender had not been on his transfer wish list this summer until Anderson suffered another setback in his recovery from a foot injury which has kept him out since December.

That forced Rovers into the market just over a week ago.

Long, who had been on McSheffrey’s radar for about six weeks, said: “Ever since I spoke to the manager and came to have a chat with him, I felt like this is a place that I’ve wanted to come

“His plans for this season are amazing and it’s something I want to be a part of.

“I felt at home even before I signed and that was a big reason why I wanted to come down here on a permanent basis.”

Long becomes Doncaster's fifth summer signing after Harrison Biggins, George Miller, Luke Molyneux and Josh Andrews.