Analysis: Dickov wants best of both worlds

David Cotterill relished life on the left wing against Blackpool.
David Cotterill relished life on the left wing against Blackpool.

Paul Dickov will be the first to admit that as a player he was not the most naturally gifted.

But what he lacked in technical ability he more than made up for in terms of sheer grit, determination and an unrelenting willingness to cover every blade of grass.

So it has been fascinating to watch Dickov the manager make a very noticeable impression on Doncaster’s playing style, quickly combining both facets of the beautiful game.

The early signs are that Dickov hopes to marry the most desirable aspects of Doncaster’s previous two management teams.

Going forward, particularly against Blackpool, Rovers were incisive, fluid and moved the ball quickly.

It harked back to the Sean O’Driscoll era, only this team aren’t afraid to throw a cross into the box or a ball into the channel.

Without the ball, Dickov inherited a team that were supremely well organised under Dean Saunders and then Brian Flynn; closing down, doing the ugly things remain key.

What has been missing thus far is the final ball or finish, while a new back five have looked slightly tentative and watchful at times.

It will take time to click.

But if it does, and Dickov can marry O’Driscoll’s style with Saunders’ substance, he could prove to be a very popular man at the Keepmoat.