Richie Wellens reveals stance on Covid vaccinations within Doncaster Rovers squad

Richie Wellens admits he would prefer if his Doncaster Rovers players were doubled jabbed against Covid-19 but he will not insist they are.

By Liam Hoden
Monday, 23rd August 2021, 11:57 am

Rovers have been hit hard by coronavirus since returning for pre-season training earlier this summer with Matt Smith and Charlie Seaman returning at the weekend after being the latest to isolate.

Regulations have now changed meaning anyone who would previously have been identified as a close contact will no longer need to isolate for ten days if they have received the two doses of the vaccine.

Rovers boss Wellens says it would be ideal if all his squad took the decision to be double jabbed as he seeks minimal disruption to his plans but he will not force them to.

Richie Wellens

“It’s a tough one,” he told the Free Press.

“Obviously you’d like them all to be double vaccinated because then it totally nullifies the risk of them being a close contact.

“But who am I to tell someone to put something in their body that they’re not comfortable with?

“The stance I will take is that we would like them to have the jab but in no way will I be forcing them to do something they don’t feel is right for them.

“We live in a world where your opinion and whatever you want to do, you should be allowed to do.

“I’m of the stance that if the players want it then great, if not, it’s not ideal but we have to go with it.”

Wellens confirmed some of his players have not opted for the vaccine at this stage.

He said: “Mary [Lally, club secretary] had a meeting with the players a few weeks ago.“What we wanted was for everyone to have been double jabbed by the time the season was a week old.

“Obviously some of the players haven’t been double jabbed.”

One case very early in pre-season for Rovers led to around a dozen senior players needing to isolate due to close contact while there have been several other instances in the weeks since, with preparations for the new campaign being severely disrupted.


In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.