'Unreal' - Louis Jones verdict delivered ahead of Doncaster Rovers' play-off tie with Crewe Alexandra

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
There's been a fair bit of debate around Louis Jones in the last few days.

The Doncaster Rovers goalkeeper was probably, in truth, not expecting to figure again this season. The arrival of Thimothee Lo-Tutala on loan from Hull City at the start of the year saw Jones bumped down to the bench.

The loanee then produced a string of impressive performances and racked up a stack of clean sheets during a spell that saw a huge upturn in form in the final third of the campaign.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

It culminated in Grant McCann's side clinching the most unlikeliest of play-off places. They sealed fifth place on only the final day, thanks to a 2-2 draw away at Gillingham.

Louis Jones came in from the cold at Gillingham for his first appearance since late January.Louis Jones came in from the cold at Gillingham for his first appearance since late January.
Louis Jones came in from the cold at Gillingham for his first appearance since late January.

Early in the second half, Lo-Tutala was shown a red card with the away side 2-0 up and looking well on course for an 11th straight win.

Enter Jones, who was summoned from the bench for his first outing in three months. He endured a torrid introduction, with the hosts pulling a goal back via a fierce free-kick within seconds of him entering the field. And just minutes later the scores were level after Rovers failed to deal with a set-piece that eventually went in off defender Tom Anderson.

But Jones excelled late on to pull off a fine reaction stop that ensured McCann's men are still without defeat since early March.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Anderson and Jones are the two longest-serving players in the squad and the defender was full of praise after the replacement entered into what was a hostile environment amid a red-hot atmosphere at Priestfield.

"Massive credit to Louis because when it's all going on, mentally you have to be switched on and stay calm and cool," Anderson told the Free Press. "It was an unreal save by him at the end.

"It was never in doubt really. I've known Louis six or seven years. He's a good person and a good guy and he showed that today. Like I say, it wasn't easy so he deserves a lot of credit (for stepping in)."

Jones will don the gloves for Monday's play-off semi-final first leg away at Crewe Alexandra, with Lo-Tutala sitting out after incurring a one-game ban.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

It might come as a surprise to some to learn that for Anderson it will be a first real taste of the play-offs.

The closest he came was in his first full season at Rovers in 2018-19, as they reached the League One end-of-season lottery that year.

The centre-half was an unused sub for both legs of the semi-final against Charlton that Rovers, with McCann in his first stint at the helm, lost on penalties.

He added: "I wasn't involved in those games. I was on the bench unfortunately so it'll be pretty exciting for me this time."

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.