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Match Previews

PREVIEW | Doncaster Rovers vs Wrexham

Two in-form sides clash at the Eco-Power Stadium.

1 April 2024

Match Previews

PREVIEW | Doncaster Rovers vs Wrexham

Two in-form sides clash at the Eco-Power Stadium.

1 April 2024

With 4 consecutive wins under their belts, Doncaster Rovers are in their best form of the season. 2nd in the 6-game form table going into the Easter Monday programme (they're top of the 5-game table), they face a Wrexham side which followed up a confident win at Grimsby by beating league leaders Mansfield impressively on Friday. Something's got to give!



Saturday's win over Mansfield was a massive result, not least because yesterday's results fell so well for us. Paiul Mullin's goals capped a fine performance which knocked Mansfield off the top of the table. With George Evans and Ryan Barnett returning to the pitch after injuries. it was a great day all round for Phil Parkinson, who will hope Jacob Mendy is also available for the trip to Donscaster.

That two-match stutter against Harrogate and Tranmere is the only blemish in a strong run of form since mid-February, coinciding with the installation of Max Cleworth, Eoghan O'Connell and Will Boyle as our back three. That trio have started 9 games as a combination and conceded just 4 goals, keeping 4 clean sheets. However, we haven't shut the opposition out in an away match since the FA Cup win at Shrewsbury, and you have to go back 10 games to find our last league away clean sheet, at Swindon on Boxing Day.




Doncaster Rovers are finishing the season in fine style, and will rue the injury crisisi which made life so difficult for manager Grant McCann in the middle of the season. As the injuries have eased, Rovers have flouished: having lost just 1 game since February, they are currently on a run of 4 consecutive wins. 

McCann told the Yorkshire Post that he's not surprised to see his squad perform so well now their injuries woes have lessened: "I've said this all season - we have got a really good group of boys here. Unfortunately, times in the season, we've missed 14 to 15 of them in spells. It's certainly hindered us and hindered the consistency of the results.

I think what we've seen over the last 10 games particularly, maybe from January onwards, is a team that is top four or five in the division and from February onwards, top of the division.

-Grant McCann

"I think that's down to the consistency of team selection, players being fit, players pushing the players in the team, players chomping at the bit to be involved. Decisions I've got to make every week of who I even put on the bench, not about who I put in the team. It's certainly made us a stronger unit.

"The winner in me was frustrated in the early part of the season but pleased in the second half of the season, in terms of where we are with the group and strength in depth.

"You try not to worry about them when they happen, you try focus on the boys that are fit but it's certainly helped us over the last few months."

Last Friday they enjoyed a superb win away to another in-form side, Crawley Town. Rovers were 1-0 up in the 66th minute when Tom Anderson was dismissed for a professional foul, but went on to clinch victory when substitute Max Biamou struck in the 8th minute of added time. Rovers captain Richard Wood told the Rovers club website that he relished their back to the wall effort:

“I really enjoyed it. That’s what I pride myself of - throwing my body in front of everything. I think we’ve been really solid in the last few weeks defensively and it’s been a pleasure to play alongside everyone.

“Everyone has been so switched on and confidence and results help with that. We just need to stay switched on and see what happens. We’ve just got to keep playing. We’ve got something to carry on a keep momentum going and keep the unbeaten run going.

“It was an impressive away performance. Momentum is definitely with us. It could have been more. We had some good chances that we didn’t take. We got there at the end which was a relief for everyone. We’re in a good place.”

The future looks bright for Rovers as McCann plans for next season. Skipper Wood, Zain Westbrook, James Maxwell and Ben Close have all signed new contracts in the last couple of weeks, while Tottenham academy midfielder Matthew Craig has signalled that he's hoping his loan spell at Doncaster can be made permanent. 

Close, who is ruled out for the season, told Rovers' website: “I’m really pleased to get this sorted. I really feel that the club is going in the right direction and I’m looking forward to being a part of it over the next two years.

“The way the second half of the season has panned out and if we can keep a lot of the group of players we’ve got now together, I think we’ll have a really good chance of achieving success next year and in the years to come as well.”




We've never played at the Eco-Power Stadium before, but signed off at Rovers' old ground in decent fashion. We were unbeaten in our last 3 games at Belle Vue, and registered our best win there since 1933 in the process. That win came in August 1994 as we clashed in a League Cup tie. We trailed 1-0 at half time, but Gary Bennett snatched an equaliser in the first minute of the second half, and goals from Karl Connolly and Steve Watkin gave us the lead. Rovers pulled a goal back 5 minutes from the end, but Watkin struck again in the last minute to restore our 2-goal lead. Rovers gave the second leg a good go, but were unable to pull off an unlikely comeback. Watkin continued his fine vein of form against them with an early goal, although the visitors at least managed to equalise and earn a draw.

We'd been at Belle Vue 2 seasons earlier as we approached what would turn out to be a successful promotion run-in. Rovers gave us a rough ride, though, and it looked like we'd fall to a 1-0 defeat until the 89th minute when Mike Lake pinched a point.

Our final game at Belle Vue was a goalless draw in November 2004.


The best result we've enyed at Doncaster, which I mentioned earlier, was an emphatic comeback led by our greatest goalscorer. We fell behind after 3 minutes, but Tommy Bamford then intervened in the grand manner, scoring 4 goals to clinch a 4-1 win.

Bamford is comfortably our top scorer in this fixture, having scored 10 goals past Rovers. The next best total is 3, achiieved by George Burditt, Connolly, Micky Metcalf and Watkin.


Eoghan O'Connell's 300th career appearance.

Jacob Mendy's 200th career match.

Elliot Lee's 100th Wrexham appearance.

Ollie Palmer's 100th league match for Wrexham.


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