A statement released by Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council confirms that Doncaster Rovers will take over running of the Keepmoat Stadium “subject to appropriate agreements being confirmed”. The announcement goes on to explain that this new arrangement “will see Doncaster Rovers pay the council an inflation linked £100,000 per year and take over responsibility for the existing loss making operation from the current council owned Stadium Management Company.”
The agreement ensures that both the Doncaster Rugby League side and the Doncaster Rovers Belles will remain at the stadium, subject to their continued payment for usage; their payments now going to the Rovers rather than the Council.
Surprises aplenty as Rovers announce which of the squad will be retained and which released following relegation from the Championship. With funds tight, Rovers are in a position where they need to sell players currently contracted in order to be able to offer new deals to those whose contracts have come to their conclusion.
Arguably the most eye-opening name on the retained list is that of Habib Beye, the Senegal international who spent much of each week last season training with Marseilles rather than Rovers.
Huge disappointments on the released list too with crowd and fanzine favourite Mustapha Dumbuya on his way out, as well as home town hero Sam ‘der Kaiser’ Hird. Simon Gillett, who played more than any Rovers player last season also departs, as too does the long-serving James Hayter. Also shown the door are Saunders’ ‘future prospects’ Fabien Robert and Damien Plessis, whoever he may be.