Rovers Development sides given test by Premier League Club.
The Easter Holidays have provided the perfect opportunity for Doncaster Rovers Development sides to pit their wits against top class opposition in the form of Norwich City.
The Canaries laid on travel for four of their junior sides (U-12’s, U-13’s, U-14’s and U-15’s) to compete against some of the respective rising talents of the surrounding areas.
Rovers Foundation Co-ordinator Sam Parkin, who oversaw the U-12 age group explained his delight at a feast of football at the Keepmoat Stadium’s outer pitches, “The boys did really well, and they can only benefit from the experience,” he said.
“Norwich are a very good side and it’s rare for us to get the chance to play clubs of their calibre. I think they were receptive to the facilities and the conditions that were on show and there’s plenty for us to build on.”
With a potential star of the future on show, Parkin outlined the team’s approach.
“We try and play the right way, which is to keep possession – as you can’t do anything without the ball – and then attack. We’re also quite keen to emphasise the need to make the right decisions on the ball,” he said.
“The club’s ethos starts at the very top, with Paul Dickov and the first team, and as coaches we are informed by Ben Mawson (Foundation Phase Lead Coach) and Paul Wilson (Head of Youth) how we are encouraged to play.
“That includes clear decision making, having no fear and instilling flair, if and when suitable. Certainly after a game that I’m involved with, I ask the players what they have learnt collectively and individually and then take that forward in to training and future matches. At the end of the day, we’re aiming to aid their development as best we can,” he said.
Some of the pitches also saw Rovers’ Soccer Camps for Easter taking place and Parkin said it was great to see all the facilities in use, “There were lots of kids in Rovers shirts and it’s great to see them keeping themselves busy and healthy during this time of year, getting outdoors.”