Doncaster Rovers star Owen Bailey plays on despite potentially fracturing eye socket
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Summer signing Bailey has played more minutes than any other Doncaster player this season, starring in both defence and midfield.
"He keeps going and going and going. So robust, so strong, he is just a dream.
"He just gets on with it...class. It looks like he's got a fractured eye socket but it doesn't keep him off, he cracks on."
A swollen lump was visible underneath Bailey's right eye in the second half at the Wham Stadium following a collision at the end of the first period.
He played the entire 120 minutes of the match, however, as Doncaster won 2-1 to progress to the second round.
Bailey was one of 12 new arrivals at Rovers over the summer.
He was billed as a defensive midfielder upon his arrival from Gateshead and began the season playing at the base of Doncaster’s midfield.
But a string of injuries has seen Bailey used in defence in recent months, a role he has taken to with ease.
The 24-year-old revealed to The Free Press he was previously a defender before moving up into midfield at Newcastle.
He said: “During my time at Newcastle I played a lot of games at centre-back, that was my main position.
"I played two, three, four full seasons there. It’s something I’m used to. In recent times I haven’t played there as regularly.
"Towards the end of my time at Newcastle I went into midfield.”
It is understood Bailey had been on Doncaster’s radar as far back as the summer of 2022 – 12 months after the club decided not to offer him a contract following a trial.
McCann said: “We brought him here because of his versatility knowing he can play in various positions.
"Every position he plays in, he plays it well. I’m really pleased with the versatility he brings to us.”