‘We have a few lovers’ tiffs but then it’s back to work – and we have a cuddle afterwards’

John Marquis and Mathieu Baudry
John Marquis and Mathieu Baudry

Even the best of friends are not immune from a few cross words in the battle for success.

Just ask John Marquis and Mathieu Baudry.

The good mates have become quite the double act, ribbing each other in front of the press since their arrival at Doncaster Rovers last summer.

They were the last men standing at the Keepmoat when Rovers secured promotion. Long after supporters had departed the stadium, they were singing on the pitch, continuing their celebrations with no one watching.

Yet often during matches, the casual observer could be forgiven for thinking there was some needle between the two.

Marquis is not afraid to admonish team mates for misplaced passes or poor runs.

And Baudry in particular will often come in for one of the striker’s rants.

But Marquis insists his frustration is driven by a desire for success, which he is convinced his team mates share.

“At the end of the day we all have a common goal which is being successful at Doncaster,” he told the Free Press. “That’s why we’re here.

“Whether that means I’ve shouted at Frenchy [Baudry], because I’ve done that a few times.

“But he takes it well.

“For me as a person, when someone shouts at me, I want to go and do the next thing right so I can prove them wrong.

“Maybe that’s my mentality a bit and that is probably why I shout at people.

“You want to see a reaction sometimes.

“It’s not because you’re digging them out.

“You know they can do better and they probably know it themselves.

“It’s probably a bit of a wake-up.

“We’re all really close off the pitch.

“There’s been a lot of lovers’ tiffs in training and on the pitch but as soon as we come off the pitch it’s back to work.

“And we have a little cuddle afterwards so it’s all fine.”

The close relationship is not confined to Marquis and Baudry.

It has been clear to see throughout this season that the Rovers squad is a tight group.

They have dragged each other through tough times and sticky spots on the way to promotion.

And they have celebrated as a group as the success has been earned.

Marquis believes the strong bond throughout the entire squad has been a major part of Rovers’ run back to League One.

“We’re a very close knit group and you have to have that to be successful,” he said.

“It’s not easy not being in the team but at the same time I think the players that aren’t in the team respect that the team is doing well.

“At the end of the day we’re all going to benefit from a promotion, in terms of being back in League One where the club should be.

“Everything at the club will improve being back in League One.

“Along the way you’re going to have good form and bad form but we’ve stuck together through it all.

“There’s been maybe five or six core players that have played the majority of games this season.

“But there’s also a group behind them that have done superbly well when they’ve been needed.

“They’ve been fit and ready to go because there’s nothing worse when you haven’t been playing, you’re a bit down on confidence and then you come into the team and don’t do yourself justice. I’ve been there myself.

“But I think every player that has come into the team this season has done themselves justice when they have come in.”

With the League Two title still up for grabs each available player will be called upon.

And there will be a few more cuddles to be had if more success comes for the team.