Burton trip with Doncaster Rovers sends Darren Moore back to where it all began
Darren Moore will today return to the place where his path to managing Doncaster Rovers began more than eight years ago.
The Rovers boss is preparing to face Burton Albion, where he picked up his first coaching experience as his career as a professional player wound down.
And he expects the memories to flood back when he arrives at the Pirelli Stadium.
“As I was coming to the end of my playing career, I started to take a reserve group which had seniors and younger lads,” Moore told the Free Press.
“That was my first step into coaching and when I started picking it up.
“At the end of that year I got offered the academy role with the U18s at West Brom and I went into coaching full time from there.
“But it started initially down there.”
Moore felt the spell working with Burton’s second string provided good grounding for his coaching career that would lead to senior football with West Brom initially and then Rovers.
“At the time we trained a lot over at St George’s Park [England’s training base],” he said. “We were watching it being built because we’d got a couple of pitches there.
“I think the club still trains there. It’s an incredible facility and when you think a club the size of Burton has access to that as a training facility is marvellous.
“We used to train on a pitch with undersoil heating through the winter all week and we’d get to the Pirelli on a Saturday and there would be a frozen pitch!
“Those kind of memories will live long.”
The Rovers boss is looking forward to potentially spotting some recognisable faces this afternoon but says sentiment will end once the match begins.
“I have really great memories and it will be nice to go back there,” he said.
“It’s probably the first time that I’ve been back there since I left.
“It’ll be nice to see if there’s still one or two of the staff there, the chairman Ben [Robinson] and the family. It’ll be good to go back and see them.
“It’ll be great to go back with my team and compete against them.
“Once we kick off, the competitive element kicks in.”