Getting to know Jason Lokilo - Doncaster Rovers' first summer signing of 2020
Doncaster Rovers have completed their first piece of transfer business in the 2020 summer window by bringing back familiar face Jason Lokilo to the Keepmoat.
The winger joined Rovers on loan in January but was limited to just a single senior appearance before the Covid-19 pandemic ultimately ended the season.
But he is back for more, having signed a one-year contract and will look to fully introduce himself to Rovers supporters.
Here, we take a look at the career so far of the 21-year-old forward.
BORN: September 17, 1998, Brussels, Belgium.
TRICKY, CONFIDENT, ENTERTAINING
Lokilo likes to take on opposition defenders and will throw in a few flashy tricks along the way. A smallish winger, he typically plays on the right but is left footed so likes to cut inside and go for goal.
IT STARTED WITH A TRIAL
Lokilo came through the Anderlecht academy before taking part in a trial with Palace in the summer of 2015. Arsenal were also said to have shown an interest but Palace snapped him up on his first professional contract.
HE IMPRESSED A DUTCH LEGEND
Strong pre-season performances for the Palace U23s in the summer of 2017 convinced then-boss Frank De Boer to take Lokilo on the club's training camp in France. He then started in a front three alongside Wilf Zaha and Christian Benteke in a friendly against FC Metz.
HIS FULL DEBUT CAME SOON AFTER
Lokilo was handed his senior debut in August 2017 in a League Cup tie with Ipswich Town, playing the full 90 minutes. That proved to be his only senior appearance for Palace.
A SPELL IN FRANCE
Lokilo was loaned to French second tier side Lorient during the 2018/19 season as he looked for senior opportunities. He admitted at the time that he felt his chances of representing Palace in the Premier League were slim until he gained senior experience. He made five appearances during his stay.
HE HAS INTERNATIONAL HONOURS
Lokilo represented DR Congo U20s in 2015.
ROVERS SPELL CUT SHORT
Lokilo was required to bide his time after joining Rovers on loan in January. A combination of him needing to get up to speed with Rovers’ style of play and his own match fitness, plus the presence of five other loanees in the squad meant it was a while before he was handed his debut. That came off the bench in the win over Wycombe Wanderers in March when he put in a dangerous ball which was turned home by the Chairboys’ Jason McCarthy. The Covid-19 pandemic put paid to his hopes of adding further appearances before the end of the season.
WHAT THEY SAID
Rovers boss Darren Moore: “Every player we try to bring in going forward has to work for the football club and Jason has been brought here because we believe in his talent and ability. We believe it’s something that we haven't got in the team. I think certainly he has the ability when games are tight to unlock the door in terms of his ability and speed.”
Lokilo himself: “I’m a right winger, but I can play anywhere. I like to pass the ball and get assists. I'm left-footed, so I like to cut inside to create chances to score."
Rovers U23s boss Gary McSheffrey: “I think on the ball he’s top drawer. I spoke to Richard Shaw, who was his U23s coach at Palace, on the day we signed him and the message was ‘Sheffs, on the ball you will love him.’ He’s my type of player in similar positions to where I played.”