Promising youngster Joe Pugh has signed a professional contract with Doncaster Rovers and will be with us next season.Looking to follow in the footsteps of Harry Middleton, Mitchell Lund and Liam Mandeville who also came through the club’s youth academy, Joe (son of former Rover Daral Pugh) has signed a one year deal with the club and will be a part of the first team squad next season.
"It was tough at the beginning because I was injured for about 4 months and I didn’t think I would be fit in time to play this season," he said.
“But I came back, played well and obviously did enough to impress which I’m delighted about."
Pugh left Premier League Hull City last season before signing for Doncaster as a first year scholar in February. Since then, despite being hit by injury, he has gone on to impress for both the Under 18 and the Development side.
“I left Hull because I wasn’t enjoying my football. I wanted to be somewhere I knew I’d enjoy football again and get games every week but I’m a local lad too. I live about ten minutes away and I think it’s really good playing for your local team."
The young striker has recently been made captain of the Development side and also scored two goals in ten minutes to get a win for Rovers away at Gateshead.
“It’s been a great week for me,” he went on to say.
“Ever since I found out about the contract, then scoring two goals and now training with the senior pro’s, I’m really pleased and think I’ve done well."
On captaining the side and being a leader to the youngsters he said: “I enjoy inspiring the younger lads. They see me as an older figure in the side and a leader. It means I’ve got to work hard, because if you work hard as a captain then everyone else will, it’s like a domino effect."
Joe’s father Daral Pugh may also be known amongst Rovers fans as he made 154 appearances for the club between 1977-1982.
“My dad takes a bit of a back seat role actually, but he's inspired me a lot. He’s been a great role model to me over the years and has always been supportive. He keeps me grounded and keeps my feet on the floor. I appreciate that."
The young striker is also a former participant with Rovers in the Community which is now known as Club Doncaster Foundation.
Watch the full interview with Joe on signing a professional contract here