Deja vu for Paul Dickov as takeover talks take precedence over transfer business

Paul Dickov
Paul Dickov

Paul Dickov’s summer squad re-building is on hold while Doncaster Rovers ponder John Ryan and Louis Tomlinson’s takeover proposal.

The Scot was made aware of the current owners’ preferred playing budget at a recent board meeting, but it is subject to change if the club changes ownership.

Doncaster currently have 13 players under contract for next season.

But, as Rovers continue to mull over a proposition put to them by former chairman Ryan, the current state of flux means that Dickov is unlikely to get the go-ahead to add to his squad until a takeover deal is either struck or rejected outright.

The situation mirrors the same scenario that Dickov faced last summer when he arrived at Doncaster amid a backdrop of takeover uncertainty, when Irish-led consortium Sequentia Capital were attempting to push through a buy-out and Dickov was unsure of the budget he would have available.

Dickov is understood to have been prevented from sanctioning any new contracts up until the end of May. Whether that embargo has now been lifted is unclear.

Rovers stated last week that the owners are looking to ensure a swift resolution to the takeover discussions so as to not impact adversely on summer transfer activity.

Ryan and Tomlinson are believed to have formalised their bid to buy the club before the 22-year-old pop star recently took a week-long break from One Direction’s world tour, which resumed last week.

One Direction’s earnings are predicted to soar - with reports claiming the band could rake in £600m over the course of this year - which could have a knock-on effect on the club’s playing budget, should Rovers choose to accept the proposal on the table.

Rovers have offered terms to the eight players whose contracts are due to expire this summer, including Ross Turnbull, Paul Keegan, David Cotterill and James Coppinger.

The Star understands that some of those eight, if not all, have been offered significantly reduced terms.

However, Dickov must wait patiently, just like he did last summer, to begin tying players down on new contracts.