Doncaster Rovers defender Bobby Faulkner tipped for bright future

Bobby Faulkner has been tipped for a bright future with Doncaster Rovers after catching the eye in his latest appearance.
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The 18-year-old centre-back played 70 minutes of last weekend’s 2-1 win over Salford City after replacing the injured Kyle Knoyle in the first half.

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Local lad Faulkner, from Norton, made his professional debut off the bench against Sutton United in injury time earlier this month and was also thrown on in the dying minutes against AFC Wimbledon a week later with Rovers once again chasing a late goal.

Doncaster Rovers defender Bobby Faulkner.Doncaster Rovers defender Bobby Faulkner.
Doncaster Rovers defender Bobby Faulkner.
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On his display against Salford, Doncaster boss Gary McSheffrey said: “He was excellent. He’s just a joy to work with, he’s a throwback, you don’t get many like him.

"He will have a good career at this club. He’s already a fans’ favourite. He’s a local and would die for the shirt.”

McSheffrey added: "He played in the back three, then he played centre-back in a two and he was aggressive.”

Faulkner was initially introduced at right-back before moving into the centre of defence alongside Ro-Shaun Williams.

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Their impressive partnership saw both players block goal-bound efforts as Doncaster protected their lead in the second-half following Kyle Hurst’s double.

Faulkner joined Rovers’ youth team at under-16 level and signed his first professional contract in November before agreeing a new, two-year deal in May.

He recently completed studying for a BTEC Level 3 qualification in sport at the Club Doncaster Sports College.

Faulkner impressed on loan at Frickley Athletic last term and had been set for a loan spell in the National League North before his season was cut short due to an ankle injury.

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It is understood there is interest in him from a club at that level, as well as a Northern Premier League side.

Injuries to several first-team defenders have presented an opportunity in Doncaster’s first team earlier than had been anticipated, however.

Winger and first-year pro Tavonga Kuleya has also appeared at first-team level for Rovers this season.

Since the club’s academy was reformed in 2004 just two players – James Husband and Harry Middleton – have made more than 50 first-team appearances after graduating from the system.

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