Fans’ Forum: Club Doncaster is ‘safe and sustainable’ strategy - Jay Baker

Club Doncaster is the brainchild of Rovers chief executive Gavin Baldwin.
Club Doncaster is the brainchild of Rovers chief executive Gavin Baldwin.

Us Doncaster Rovers fans can be forgiven for our cynicism.

Whenever we’ve heard about another deal involving the club’s ownership or business initiatives, it’s become second nature to furrow our brows with concern or suspicion.

This time, though, our beloved Rovers seem to have settled into a safe, sustainable strategy with the ‘Club Doncaster’ initiative.

If we want our team to do well – rather than beg, borrow, or steal money to get a good run into the Championship or even the Premier League, at risk of suddenly finding our club plunged into administration – then the whole organisation has to become dynamic at finding ways of generating regular revenue streams (which can then help increase Paul Dickov’s playing budget).

This is what Club Doncaster looks like it’s doing, as our home of the Keepmoat Stadium falls under the club’s control and can be utilised as an asset, rather than something we take for granted and literally and figuratively sit on while our home games are played there.

It’s refreshing, in these times of tycoons and oligarchs, to see those in charge of a football club actually looking to the town it represents to support it and sustain it.

Imagine Doncaster Rovers leading the sporting pack of not just the Dons, but the Belles or other teams in order to offer them some security, while ensuring that the Keepmoat is a revenue-generating asset that, in turn, boosts the football club.

Football’s a funny sport, in the sense that when you’re sat watching the Rovers in the Keepmoat, you’re all bonding together in the belief that on that pitch, those eleven men, from all over the country and indeed the world, are wearing red and white hoops and representing you and your town while kicking a ball about.

But what we need is for that to be an authentic experience.

With local initiatives and support networks – and our very own Viking Supporters Cooperative (VSC) – grounding the club in its town, we will have a Rovers that truly represents the people of Doncaster, rooted in our area, rather than the offshore accounts of some businessman looking to make a quick buck.

Jay Baker is our VSC representative on our new Fans’ Forum. Read the views of Jay, as well as Mike Follows, Wesley Grimes (of Doncaster Rovers Supporters Group) and Paul Mayfield (of Doncaster Rovers Supporters Club) every week in the Free Press.