Doncaster Rovers smash Prostate United challenge as they top fundraising table above Manchester United
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Each member of the team committed to running, cycling or walking every day in October, battling injury, illness and adverse weather conditions along the way.
As of this afternoon Rovers had raised over £15,400 – more than any other sports club taking part and almost double that of Manchester United in second place.
Setting off together from the Eco-Power Stadium, staff completed their final run with a lap around Lakeside Lake on Tuesday afternoon before returning to the ground to a round of applause from attendees of the Club Doncaster Foundation’s weekly 'walk and talk' session.
"There’s definitely a feeling around the club that it’s getting back to where it used to be, which is what everybody wants,” said Rovers legend Coppinger.
"It’s going in the right direction. Stuff like this helps.”
Coppinger, who retired at 40 after a club-record 695 games, still looks fit enough to be playing professional football.
But he revealed doing the daily 5K runs was the most he’s moved since hanging up his boots two years ago.
“I have actually surprisingly enjoyed it,” said Coppinger.
“It was really tough at the start. I hadn’t done anything after retiring, five-a-side probably once a week at a push.
"It gave me a purpose for 31 days which I really enjoyed.
"I feel like it has brought us together as a coaching staff, not just the first team.”
McCann’s Doncaster return in May triggered a transformation in the atmosphere around the Eco-Power Stadium and has helped bring the fans and their club together again.
The Rovers chief and his staff kept supporters up to date with their progress throughout October – and they responded with generous donations and words of encouragement.
McCann, who has seen family members and friends affected by prostate cancer, which kills one man every 45 minutes, added: “There’s a real togetherness among the fans, staff, supporters and players here helping cheer us on.
"It’s an amazing effort from everyone.
"We want to try and keep together. Any football season is tough and these little things help create a real good atmosphere.
“We have managed to plug on and get through it.”
McCann and his assistant Cliff Byrne have completed the Prostate United challenge with staff at both of their previous clubs, Peterborough and Hull, over the past two seasons.
The total they raised this year has surpassed the £8,000 generated at Hull in 2021 and £13,600 at Peterborough last year.
"It’s been an unbelievable amount of money we have raised,” said McCann.
"It’s been incredible, the support we have achieved.
"I knew it was going to happen here with the togetherness and tremendous staff we have got, with everybody doing their bit to raise much-needed funds and awareness for this great charity.”
Same again next year?
"Absolutely. Over the last three years I have doe it at Hull, Peterborough and Doncaster,” said McCann.
"I hope next year I am doing it at Doncaster and not another football club.”
You can donate to Rovers’ Prostate United fundraising efforts HERE.