Opposing view: Mutch ado about Jordon

Jordon Mutch
Jordon Mutch
Share this article

THE incredible trend of players with Doncaster connections kicking Rovers while they are down has become just another sub-plot to a season like no other.

And the bad news is the sequence might not be over just yet.

Birmingham’s Jordon Mutch has turned from a boy into a man since his loan spell at the Keepmoat Stadium two years ago and he is set to play a central role in tonight’s prime time sequel to December’s drama at St Andrew’s.

Like Gareth Roberts, Rossington raised Darius Henderson and then Billy Sharp, midfielder Mutch will take little satisfaction from adding to Doncaster’s woes.

As a gangly teenager he gained vital experience under the watchful eye of Sean O’Driscoll and showcased a technique that suggested bigger and better things were just around the corner.

Given the criticism Rovers have received for their current transfer policy, he was the sort of loan signing that nobody has any complaints over - a young, talented English player with the world at his feet seeking an opportunity to learn his trade.

It is fair to say that while Rovers have been on the slide ever since he departed Doncaster at the end of 2009/10 season, Mutch’s career has gone in completely the opposite direction.

A broken ankle just two games into this season put the playmaker on the sidelines and meant he missed the Blues’ last gasp 2-1 win over Rovers.

But the England youth international started the season as first choice in Chris Hughton’s (pictured left) midfield - and looks to set to finish there too.

Mutch has been playing in an advanced role just behind Marlon King in recent weeks, giving him licence to roam and link up play.

He might not have scored a senior goal yet for the Blues, a part of his game he will be keen to improve.

But after hardly missing a game since returning to the side in mid-December, he is clearly doing something right at a club that boasts impressive resources.

Mutch’s central role has meant that Erik Huseklepp, on loan from cash-strapped Porstmouth, has often started out wide on the left, although Hughton is flexible in his approach and is not afraid to change things mid-game.

On the other flank, former Cardiff winger Chris Burke is a player who Rovers have struggled to handle in recent seasons, while Hughton also has the option of Spurs loanee Andros Townsend who recently caught the eye for Leeds against Rovers.

Birmingham returned to the top six with a draw against Cardiff at the weekend but they have been plagued by travel sickness during March and have failed to live up to the standards they set at the turn of the year when they hit Millwall for six and enjoyed a big win at Leeds.

They arrive at the Keepmoat having had the luxury of a week off, while Rovers will be facing their fourth game in 11 days.

Tiredness is not something likely to effect a certain young midfielder who will be keen to impress in his central role.

And should Jordon follow the lead of Messrs Roberts, Henderson and Sharp, it will almost be too Mutch to take for the Rovers faithful.