Gary McSheffrey on whether Doncaster Rovers will pursue potential returns for John Marquis and Paul Downing

Gary McSheffrey insists Doncaster Rovers would be priced out of a return for former striker John Marquis to the Eco-Power Stadium.
John MarquisJohn Marquis
John Marquis

Marquis has reportedly been made available for transfer by Portsmouth, whom he joined from Rovers in the summer of 2019.

While admitting the 29-year-old would likely make a major impact for Rovers, McSheffrey said a deal for Marquis would not be possible.

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“John is brilliant,” the Rovers boss said. “He’s a great player and I’m sure he would come here and guarantee some goals.

“But Portsmouth aren’t just going to give him away. They’re going to want to recoup a lot of his salary.

“John’s alone would probably eat up the whole budget that we’ve got.

“We feel with the money available we could get four good additions in and you’ve got to weigh it up.

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“John would be great but realistically he’s going to be too expensive.”

Marquis’ contract is set to expire in the summer with Portsmouth unlikely to take up the option for an additional year.

He has netted 37 times in 121 appearances for Pompey. He scored 66 times in 153 appearances over three campaigns for Rovers before departing.

Portsmouth are understood to be keen to offload several players during the January window as they look to free up funds for new additions.

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One of those is former Rovers loanee Paul Downing, who has been linked with a move back to the Eco-Power in reports in the south.

McSheffrey admitted the 30-year-old centre back is on the list of potential targets for Rovers in January but his salary means he is not at the top name among possible centre back additions.

“He’s been on the centre back list,” he said.

“He’s not been our number one target.

“On the list, he’s probably the one that earning the most money so it would be quite an expensive loan and it would eat up quite a lot of the budget.

“He’s not on the top end of the list but he’s definitely been spoken about in the last month or so.”

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Downing joined Portsmouth in the summer of 2019 after completing his loan at Rovers from Blackburn Rovers. He has managed just 27 appearances for Pompey in the last two and a half years.


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