Doncaster Rovers have managed to get their first signing of the summer over the line, and in the process they’ve weakened a potential promotion rival for the 2021-22 campaign.
The Yorkshire side have confirmed the acquisition of Portsmouth midfielder Ben Close once his contract on the south coast expires at the end of the month, with the 24-year-old penning a three-year contract at the Keepmoat Stadium.
Close was offered fresh terms by Portsmouth along with other first-team players, but he’s decided to depart the club he’s been at since he was a youngster to pursue a new opportunity.
The midfielder isn’t the only player to turn down Pompey’s fresh advances, with centre-back Jack Whatmough also departing for a divisional rival in Wigan Athletic.
Close though is an important signing for Doncaster, as he will slot into a position that didn’t really get replaced following the January loss of Ben Whiteman to Preston North End.
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Doncaster’s results nose-dived following January last season and that may have had something to do with their midfield being weakened as a result of Whiteman’s sale, and Close could be his natural successor.
Rovers fans are delighted with Richie Wellens’ first bit of business since returning to the club as manager and they’ve been celebrating the signing on social media.
Maybe Darren was just horrific at sorting deals out. Great signing 🇦🇹
— Mason (@Mason__drfc) June 7, 2021
Big smile on his face, he looks happy to be here which is class to see! A club on its way back 🔴⚪️🔴⚪️
— Elbowww ✯ (@EllisMatthewFox) June 7, 2021
3yr deal that’s what we are talking about come on you reds #drfc
— matt (@MightyroverMatt) June 7, 2021
Three year deal 😍😍
— ROVERSTILLIDIE104 (@ryanwashbourn26) June 7, 2021
— Black Bank (@Black_Bank_DRFC) June 7, 2021
Welcome to Donny, Ben! 👏🏻
— ☥ 𝘎𝘦𝘮𝘮𝘢 (@mummygemz) June 7, 2021
— Robert Ghosh (@Rupee92) June 7, 2021
— Callum (@Callumlmartin) June 7, 2021
Brilliant signing. Great start to the recruitment https://t.co/7rhweapZce
— Matt (@Matt_Walker96) June 7, 2021