NEW TO LEAGUE ONE | Doncaster Rovers
There will be seven new teams to League One ready to begin the 2017/18 season in the third tier once that first whistle is blown in August. We are profiling each of those seven teams, who will all be coming up against the Bantams this coming campaign.
Today, it’s Doncaster Rovers
Rovers were relegated from League One at the end of the 2015/16 season but they meant business in their attempt to bounce back with an immediate promotion from League Two. The South Yorkshire club were well clear at the top of the table in the final stretch of fixtures but a late dip in form after achieving promotion meant they finished third when it looked almost inevitable that they’d win the title.
John Marquis was an astute summer signing from Millwall in the close season this time last year and his 26 goals in all competitions proved vital in Doncaster’s push for a positive season. The forward was included in the Sky Bet League Two Team of the Year along with veteran teammate and long serving Rovers midfielder, James Coppinger.
Darren Ferguson’s side haven’t been extensively active in the summer transfer window as of yet but they have managed to get their recruitment underway. Niall Mason, who spent part of last season on loan from Aston Villa, made his move permanent; Grimsby Town full-back Danny Andrew made the switch and more recently, Alex Kiwomya signed a three-year deal after his departure from Chelsea.
In Doncaster Rovers, the Bantams have one of two Yorkshire derbies this coming season following the relegation of Rotherham United from the Championship. City’s last trip to the Keepmoat Stadium, saw Devante Cole score the winning goal inside the first minute of the game back in October 2015. The return fixture at Valley Parade saw Phil Parkinson’s complete a league double with Jamie Proctor scoring in a 2-1 victory.
Stuart McCall’s side won’t have to wait long to clash with Doncaster having been paired with them in the first round of the newly-named Carabao Cup (formerly known as the EFL Cup). The derby will take place at the Northern Commercials Stadium, the week commencing the 7th August
The EFL’s official betting partner, Sky Bet, reckon Rovers will not struggle to maintain their League One status this time around and are in-fact probably deemed as outsiders for another promotion push. They can be backed at 7/1 for promotion and 20/1 to win the title outright, with odds of 11/4 for them to be in the play-off places come the end of the campaign. On the other end of the scale, Ferguson’s men are ranked at 11/2 for relegation and an immediate return to League Two.