Transforming Doncaster Rovers is my biggest job yet, admits ex-Hull City and Peterborough United boss

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Grant McCann says the task of transforming the fortunes of Doncaster Rovers is his biggest job in management yet.

After recording their lowest finish since returning to the Football League 20 years ago last season, Rovers were at a low ebb before McCann's return.

The scale of the challenge the ex-Hull and Peterborough chief faced in his second spell at Doncaster was laid bare when they failed to win any of their first seven league games, despite the arrival of 12 new payers over the summer.

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But green shoots of recovery are beginning to show and Doncaster head into this afternoon's clash against Stockport County with four wins from their last five contests - their best run of form in more than a year.

Doncaster Rovers manager Grant McCann applauds the fans at full time.Doncaster Rovers manager Grant McCann applauds the fans at full time.
Doncaster Rovers manager Grant McCann applauds the fans at full time.

Rovers might not be the biggest club McCann has taken charge of, but he did admit the job he inherited in May was.

“Given what’s previously happened at the football club – I never speak about things like that – what was going on here and that mentality of losing,” he told The Free Press.

"That was the way it felt when we walked in.

"We felt it was a little bit low, and we are slowly but surely trying to change that.

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"Not only with our own behaviours and how we work, but it’s more about the players and what we expect and demand of them.

"Every training session has got something on it, whether it’s a run and you lose. We want to try and create an environment of that winning mentality.

"It takes time, of course, and we want to perform to win as well.

"We are starting to work like that, I think the club has bought into it. I think the fans have bought into it.

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"Once you have got a whole club pulling in one direction, you have got a chance.”

McCann has retained the support of a reengaged and reinvigorated fanbase despite the slow start this season.

The special bond he shares with the supporters has only grown stronger as performances and results have improved.

Asked if he has experienced anything similar at his previous clubs, McCann said: "No I haven’t, and it feels great.

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"Even though I played at Peterborough I never really felt I had that full backing and support there.

"A lot of the fans were great with me but I didn’t have the full support like I have here.

"That just makes me even more hungry to succeed and give them something they crave to have.

"That is to try and get out of this league and get back into League One – and at some point try and get into the Championship, where I feel this club should be.”

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McCann called for more patience with Doncaster currently twentieth in League Two.

He has not been helped by a string of early season injuries, with 14 players missing for Tuesday’s win over Crawley and just one – Harrison Biggins – potentially back today.

“We were always going to take a bit of time,” he said.

"We are still going to take a bit of time. There is no magic switch.

"I think you will probably see the best of us come December or January but we are definitely moving in the right direction.”