Doncaster City hotshot Rio Allan given chance to impress at Stoke City alongside first-team stars
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Rio Allan, from Cantley, swapped shifts at Asda and studying for a degree in physical education and sports coaching to join up with the Potters’ Under-21s last week.
The 19-year-old winger, who has scored 20 goals in 13 games for Doncaster City this season, took part in training and an in-house game alongside some of the club’s first-team players.
Former McAuley Catholic High School pupil Rio told The Free Press: “It was such a good experience just training every day and enjoying my time there.
"They were impressed. They said they are going to monitor me ahead of the transfer window and hopefully get me back in around then.
"They said I need to keep performing for Doncaster City. Hopefully I will stay on form and get another opportunity.”
Rio, who is in the second year of his studies at University Campus Doncaster, based at the Eco-Power Stadium, joined eleventh-tier Doncaster City this summer.
The club, which was formed in 2022, is run by football agent Willie McKay.
Doncaster City won promotion in their inaugural campaign and are hoping for more success this term.
They are currently second in the Central Midlands League Premier Division North.
Rio said: “It’s exciting where it could go and I know opportunities could come for me if I was doing well.
"There’s quite a few players there who have played higher. They always help me on the pitch, it’s good having them about.”
Rio spent time in Doncaster Rovers’ academy as a child and trained with their Under-18s when he studied at the Club Doncaster Sports College alongside Bobby Faulkner.
He has played non-league football since he was 16, turning out for teams including Harworth Colliery, Rainworth and Goole Town, who are now captained by ex-Doncaster City defender Joe Maguire, the brother of Manchester United and England player Harry.
Rio trained alongside Ciaran Clark, Lewis Baker and Tyrese Campbell at Stoke.
He said: “They all made me feel welcome.
"It’s a big step up from Step 7 to Championship level. My fitness levels weren’t there as much but ability-wise they were impressed.”