Match Preview vs Doncaster Rovers

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No Europa Cup means the League Cup second round and thus we get to join in the fun at this stage of the competition for the first time since the 2005/06 season. Grimsby Town were our opponents that year and King, Jenas, Defoe, Lennon and Keane all played in a last minute goal defeat at Blundell Park. So these five at least should know enough to be aware that underestimating Doncaster Rovers at the Keepmoat Stadium is something we only do if we want to risk our annual end of February trip to Wembley.

Doncaster’s revival in the league last season mirrored our own. Seemingly dead and buried at Christmas, all of a sudden their results match their polished football and in the end they finished 14th. This season the good football’s continued but goalscoring’s been a huge problem with only three netted in 5 games resulting in no league wins as yet.

Neil Sullivan will be the most familiar face in the home team line up, he spent three years with us from the start of the 2000/01 season and was a generally popular figure at White Hart Lane. Also on Rovers books is Quinton Fortune, best known for his time at Man United he was with us as a junior though he never featured in the first team.

It’s anyone’s guess what our team will be. Harry will want to win as this is a competition we can do well in as we’ve recently proved. He has already hinted at resting some players though whether that means not including them at all or just on the bench we’ll find out on the night. Pavlyuchenko should get the chance to let his feet do the talking instead of his agent and others such as Rose, Naughton, Bentley and O’Hara may well get a run out, Peter Crouch as well. Given his left sidedness and his creative bent it’d be great to see John Bostock get a competitive game under his belt to find out how close he is to becoming a regular part of the first team scene.

The result of our last meeting was 7-2 to us in 1975 also in the League Cup. It’s unlikely to be a repeat this time but after all the media talk about what a strong squad we have, it’ll be interesting to see whether the understudies have enough about them to pull off a win without calling on the help of the main pin-up boys.


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