'From the first session, I was hooked' - Matty Blair on giving and getting back from Doncaster Rovers community work

If there is a community event needing the presence of a Doncaster Rovers player, you can pretty much guarantee that Matty Blair will be there.

By Liam Hoden
Thursday, 26th March 2020, 6:35 pm
Updated Thursday, 26th March 2020, 8:38 pm

But it is not all a case of give, give, give for the man who can lay claim to the title of nicest man in football.

Blair has been a dedicated supporter of Rovers’ community and foundation work since his arrival at the club almost four years ago.

His work was recognised with the PFA League One Community Player of the Year award in two consecutive years.

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Matty Blair

The 30-year-old insists it is not all a selfless endeavour. He gets plenty out of it too.

Blair has been a regular attendee of the Fit Rovers weight loss scheme since its inception three years ago, watching it grow from its initial small group to a set up involving dozens of people from across both sexes.

“From that first session, it got me hooked really,” Blair said. “Seeing 30 random blokes come together and basically want to change their lives.

“It inspired me to think ‘they’re doing it and I have a chance to be involved in it, I want to stay involved and watch this progression grow.’

“I admire everything the course is about.

“It goes beyond just losing weight. That’s the title of it but it’s saved lives.

“There were people that were down and out, their mental health was shot and it gave them something to get out of the house for.

“For so many it’s been a chance to get involved in something and they now have friends to call on to help each other out.”

One of the most enjoyable aspects of working with the Fit Rovers group for Blair has been speaking to the participants.

“I’ve had conversations with a few of them that have inspired me,” he said. “I don’t get those sort of conversations on a day to day basis with the lads.

“We’re all involved in the football world so to talk to people that you don’t normally talk to on a completely different topic other than football, I’m learning.

“Speaking to the fellas and ladies, it’s mind-blowing at times.”