Doncaster Rovers boss mulling over major Tommy Rowe selection dilemma

Richie Wellens says Doncaster Rovers’ ongoing injury problems have mainly forced his hand selection-wise but one player in particular is giving him a serious dilemma.

Thursday, 21st October 2021, 12:55 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st October 2021, 4:45 pm
Tommy Rowe celebrates his winning goal against Morecambe. Photo: Howard Roe/AHPIX LTD

Wellens must quickly find a winning formula with his goal shy side propping up League One and having suffered nine defeats in 12 games.

Ahead of Saturday’s home clash with Cheltenham Town, he insisted that injuries have given him little room for manoeuvre in terms of tinkering with personnel or team shape.

But, having seen his team score just six goals in 12 league games, Wellens says he is currently mulling over a positional switch involving top scorer Tommy Rowe.

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"We’ve had such a lack of bodies it’s not really...[possible],” said Wellens, when asked by BBC Radio Sheffield if now was the time for a change of plan.

"For example I’ve had two centre halves fit for the last three or four games. Cameron John’s been injured and Joseph Olowu was out for two weeks with concussion so my options are very limited.

"With the forwards situation we have certain players that are not scoring goals but we can’t rotate because Fejiri [Okenabirhie] is out. If Fejiri was fit he would’ve had an opportunity because we aren’t scoring goals up front.

"The biggest dilemma I’ve got at the minute is that I think Tommy Rowe is a huge threat from left back and if we have all of our other positions in place then Tommy Rowe would do really well at left back.

"I’m just in a dilemma whether to put him a little bit further forward because at the moment we’re playing too much in front of teams and Tommy Rowe can make those unselfish runs. He can make runs for himself to score goals and he also makes runs ahead of players to disrupt defences and move players around.

"That’s a dilemma that we’ve got but then obviously we need Branden [Horton] to be confident. We can’t put someone in there who’s not ready to go in and play.”

Rowe has scored three of Rovers’ six league goals. Charlie Seaman, Jordy Hiwula and Tiago Cukur have one apiece.