Milestone Copps: James Coppinger set to make 500th appearance for Doncaster Rovers

James Coppinger
James Coppinger

James Coppinger is set to reach 500 not out at Morecambe on Saturday.

And Darren Ferguson has this week backed the super-fit 35-year-old to go on and make many more appearances for Doncaster Rovers.

“I better start him! No pressure there then,” joked Ferguson.

“It’s an incredible achievement to play 500 games for one club. He hasn’t lost any of his quality really, and he’s a fit boy.

“The biggest compliment I can give him is that I wish I had managed him earlier in his career. I’ve had some good players but he must be up there as one of the best.

“He’s a great example to all the players in the squad in the way he trains, how he prepares and recovers.

“Every day means everything to him. He has his own ice baths. It’s not a coincidence he’s kept going for so long.

“I’ve really enjoyed working with him.”

Coppinger, Rovers’ all-time leading appearance maker, has himself spoken in the past about playing on into his forties.

Asked if he can go on for much longer, Ferguson replied: “Comfortably.

“But it’s something you have to unfortunately face, when you get older, you have to tailor what you do.

“I’d be very surprised if he plays 46 games this season. He’ll probably say he could, but for me to get the best out of him I’m not sure. We’ll wait and see.

“One thing I’ve been pleased with this season is his assists and goals. The position he’s playing is probably helping him.

“I like working with him and I hope we have still got many years together.”

Coppinger, with two goals and three assists to his name this term, was this week nominated for the League Two Player of the Month Award for August.

He is up against Colchester United winger Brennan Dickenson, Crewe winger Alex Kiwomya and Morecambe goalkeeper Barry Roche, with the winner to be announced tomorrow.