Doncaster Rovers: Pragmatic Dickov plots quick return

A dejected Paul Dickov after Rovers are relegated
A dejected Paul Dickov after Rovers are relegated

Doncaster Rovers are today contemplating life back in League One after slipping through the Championship trap door in the most agonising fashion possible.

In a somewhat eery reverse of the final-day drama that saw them win promotion a year ago, Rovers’ fate was sealed in stoppage time courtesy of Birmingham City’s last-gasp equaliser at Bolton Wanderers.

Relegated Doncaster had not occupied a bottom three position since January 25.

And that continued right throughout Survival Saturday, until Paul Caddis’ 90th-minute goal saved Birmingham and sent Rovers straight back down to League One.

Relegation will cost Doncaster approximately £6 million in lost revenue.

It also places a huge question mark over the futures of several out-of-contract players including James Coppinger, David Cotterill and Ross Turnbull.

Boss Paul Dickov, however, says he is going nowhere.

The Scot insists he has the full support of Rovers’ board and was adamant he will be in charge when the dust themselves down and start plotting another assault on the League One title they won last year.

“Absolutely,” said Dickov, when asked if he will be Rovers’ manager next season.

“That’s the club’s view and my view. We’ve had conversations [about that].

“All of our efforts now as a club are to make sure we get promoted next year.”

Dickov, his staff and players will meet for an end-of season de-brief this week.

The Scot was pragmatic following his side’s 1-0 defeat at Leicester City, accepting that his team’s performance summed up their season.

“It’s not about what happened on Saturday, it’s about what happened over the course of the season,” said Dickov.

“There have been times when we’ve played really well, there have been times when we’ve struggled to maintain any sort of form.

“I suppose that comes with having a small squad and the injuries we’ve picked up.

“We’re all devastated,” he added.

“But the one thing I do now is pick myself up first, pick the club up and we go again next year.”