Why there has been an increase in number of trialists for Doncaster Rovers U23s

Gary McSheffrey believes Doncaster Rovers’ U23s group is only going from strength to strength as the club continues the search for promising young additions.

Thursday, 30th January 2020, 11:46 am
Updated Friday, 31st January 2020, 5:33 pm

Numerous trialists have featured for the U23s in recent months, with a trio featuring in Wednesday night’s impressive 4-0 win over Aston Villa in the Premier League Cup.

It comes as the latest step in the development of the U23s section at the club, which has seen major changes since the start of the season, including providing a specific training structure for the players.

Boss McSheffrey says the next stage is about increasing the quality of the group to ensure a steady stream of players are ready to step up to senior level.

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Gary McSheffrey
Gary McSheffrey

And he says inviting in trialists is the perfect way to hand pick promising talent.

“We’re constantly looking,” he said.

“We started the group and to be honest at the start of every U23 group, especially at League One and Cat 3 academy level, you’re probably going in looking for quantity rather than top quality.

“I think that’s where we were at.

“But now we’re in a position where we’ve got a good structure going and people actually want to come and join us and be part of it.

“Now it is, bit by bit, about getting better personnel in technically, with better game understanding, intelligent players. Slowly but surely it’s happening.

“Hopefully come the summer we can be in a position where we have a standalone group of ten or 12 players that are all capable and it’s a good little project where hopefully we can feed the gaffer a couple of players next season and it is a bit of a conveyor belt over the next couple of years.”

McSheffrey says not all trialists who feature for his side will be potential recruits for the U23 group, with first team manager Darren Moore also taking opportunities to cast his eye over players.

“The gaffer has had a few in for his group, for squad players,” he said.

“Some of them have come in at an age, 22 or 23, where they’re not about developing in the 23s.”