Bolton Wanderers coach among names linked with Doncaster Rovers job following Gary McSheffrey’s sacking

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Several candidates with Doncaster links could be in the frame for the vacant manager’s job at Doncaster Rovers following Gary McSheffrey’s sacking.

Rovers dispensed with McSheffrey and his assistant Steve Eyre this morning amid the board’s ‘growing concern over the standard of performances in matches and a lack of progress between games.’

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McSheffrey, who was in charge as Doncaster were relegated from League One last term, oversaw a six-game unbeaten run at the start of the season but took just seven points from his last eight league games.

Sam Hird could be in the frame for the managerial vacancy at Doncaster Rovers (photo by Alex Burstow/Getty Images).Sam Hird could be in the frame for the managerial vacancy at Doncaster Rovers (photo by Alex Burstow/Getty Images).
Sam Hird could be in the frame for the managerial vacancy at Doncaster Rovers (photo by Alex Burstow/Getty Images).

Interviews for his replacement will begin tomorrow.

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Former Rovers skipper Graeme Lee, who played with head of football operations James Coppinger under Sean O'Driscoll, is understood to be interested in the role.

Lee was appointed lead coach of Middlesbrough's under-23s in 2019 before leaving last year to take over at Hartlepool United, where he managed Luke Molyneux.

Lee won 11 of his 33 games in charge, losing 10 and drawing 12 before being dismissed at the end of the season after winning just one of his final 11 matches.

Another former player linked is Doncaster-born Sam Hird.

Hird played 163 times for Rovers between 2007 and 2012 and is currently first-team coach at Bolton Wanderers in League One, having previously served as assistant manager at Barrow.

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He and Rob Kelly helped the Bluebirds avoid relegation from League Two in 20/21 after taking over with the club second from bottom.

Doncaster-born Danny Schofield could also fit the bill for Rovers.

Schofield was appointed head coach of Championship side Huddersfield Town in July but was sacked last month after one win from nine games in charge.

He reportedly turned down an opportunity to become head coach of a club in the top division of a European league this summer.

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Rob Jones, who captained Doncaster during his time at the club from 2012 to 2016, is understood to have previously applied for several EFL jobs but confirmed he is not interested in the vacancy.

Jones previously took caretaker charge at the Eco-Power Stadium following Paul Dickov’s 2015 departure.

He now works full time as a coach at Middlesbrough’s academy.

The Free Press understands the current vacancy at DN4 has piqued the interest of ex-Crewe Alexandra boss David Artell, however.

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Coincidentally, Doncaster’s next game in League Two on Saturday is against the Railwaymen, who were also relegated from League One last season.

Artell’s final game as Crewe boss was a 2-0 defeat to Rovers in April, which condemned his side to the drop two seasons after he led them back into the third tier.

Graham Coughlan is also a name under consideration, having previously applied for the job when Richie Wellens was sacked last season.

Coughlan’s first job in management came in charge of Bristol Rovers, whom he steered to safety after taking over with the club in the League One relegation zone part way through the 2018/19 season.

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He left the following season with Rovers fourth in the third tier and two points off an automatic promotion place to take charge of Mansfield in League Two.

His spell at Field Mill was far less successful, however, and he left in October 2020 having won four of his 27 games in charge.

Other names linked by bookmakers include Nigel Adkins, Graham Alexander and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink.