Liam Hoden’s Doncaster Rovers column: Strength of club is real reason to celebrate 140th birthday

Happy Birthday Doncaster Rovers!

Thursday, 3rd October 2019, 11:41 am
Keepmoat Stadium, home of Doncaster Rovers.

The club turns 140 today with a whole raft of celebrations taking place over the next few days as well as the months to follow.

Hopefully we will see a few familiar faces at the Keepmoat on Saturday – John Marquis aside – as the club invites back former players.

So here’s to 140 more.

And the club right now seems in excellent shape to still be here well into the future and ride through whatever changes may be imposed upon the footballing landscape.

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The sad and unfortunate trials and tribulations of other clubs in recent times forces a certain degree of introspection about the state of others.

Thankfully, on that front Rovers have plenty to be proud of – even more so given where the club has been in the not too distant past.

I am not one for being thankful for what you have simply because of where you were. But I do believe being in a position of strength to avoid such a horrendous scenario befalling the club again is something to have pride in.

Rovers are a world away from the Richardson era. Unrecognisable in fact. And that should not be underestimated. The work done at Rovers over the past few years has massively increased the club’s sustainability.

It might not be the sexiest word in football but it really should be the philosophy by which all clubs aspire to operate.

The upper reaches of the English game are propped up by a broadcast rights model that is very likely to alter dramatically in the next few years, never mind the next few decades. It seems inevitable there will be severely testing times ahead for many clubs.

The work to make the Keepmoat a profitable stadium – not just on matchdays but throughout the week – and many other schemes has strengthened the foundations for Rovers.

And while you may wish more money was pumped into the transfer kitty and wage budget, they have delivered real bang for their buck over the last few years – and this season so far in particular.

Enjoy the ride over the next few months and have pride in the football club whose colours you wear week in, week out.

Happy Birthday Rovers. Here’s to many more.