Why Richie Wellens believes Doncaster Rovers will have 'deficiencies' this season

Richie Wellens admits he will likely be unable to put the preferred pieces of his Doncaster Rovers squad together during this transfer window.

Saturday, 31st July 2021, 5:00 am

But he feels he has prioritised the right areas as he heads into his first campaign as Rovers boss.

Wellens would ideally like to sign a combative, athletic and physically imposing player to sit in the central position of his midfield three.

He is however increasingly resigned to the thought that such a player will not be arriving at the Keepmoat this summer and believes Rovers will have flaws out of possession as a result.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Richie Wellens

So his focus is ensuring that his side is as strong as possible with the ball this season.

“We’ve not got the finances to bring in someone like a [Sheffield United’s] Sander Berge - a player who is 6ft3, who can run, that can tackle and handle the ball,” he told the Free Press.

“What I want to try to do is get our identity back and the way we play I want to master it. In possession I want to master it.

“Are we going to have to take deficiencies with that? Yes we are. I think every club at this level will have to.

“We’re not an Ipswich or Wigan who are signing the best players in this league and paying huge amounts of money for the level.

“We want to be the best we can and get our identity back in possession.

“There will be flaws with that out of possession and that is up to me and Noel Hunt to coach them and to be on them.”

Wellens’ thinking on the issue partly explains his switch in view on trialist Louis Reed.

In the early stages of the trial period for the former Peterborough United midfielder, Wellens believed Reed was a little too similar to the players he already had in the middle of the park.

But he grew increasingly convinced Reed could complement the likes of Matt Smith and Ben Close with his quality and abilities on the ball - something which was showcased in the friendlies which took place prior to this week.

During Wednesday’s friendly with Sheffield United, Wellens was disappointed with how easily the Blades found it to get through his midfield.

But with the constraints of his playing budget, he does not feel he can rectify the issue in this current transfer window.

Instead, he will seek to ensure he prepares his players as fully as possible for what to expect from each opposition.

He said: “We will not leave a stone unturned when it comes to maximising our detail about the opposition.

“On Wednesday we gave them no information. We could have prepared for Sheffield United to play three at the back, and then they turn up and play a four and the players would have been looking at us wondering what to do.

“At the start of the season the detail on the opposition will be miles more and everyone on the pitch will know what the jobs are out of possession.”

*

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.