Doncaster Rovers’ Tommy Rowe has admitted he doesn’t know whether or not he sees himself as a left back after scoring the winning goal against Morecambe on Saturday.
The 32-year-old returned to Rovers this summer after leaving to join Bristol City in 2019, and has often been deployed as a left back by manager Richie Wellens so far this season.
Used to occupying the more attacking areas of the pitch, Rowe admitted he doesn’t know if he sees himself as a left back just yet.
“I don’t know if I see myself as a left back in terms of the mindset of what it takes to be a left back,” he said via the Doncaster Free Press.
“When I first came to Doncaster I was a midfielder or forward player. I played in a diamond a lot, I played in an attacking role.
“It was the most prolific time of my career. I’ve always been wanting to score goals but I made a habit of it here if you like.”
Rowe’s best goal return for a season came in 2016/17, when he scored scoring 13 goals during Doncaster’s League Two promotion winning campaign whilst on loan from Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Despite now being used as a left back, Rowe says the style of play Doncaster want to implement this season means he is still aiming to score plenty of goals.
“That’s one of the main reasons I wanted to come back here. The manager sold it to me the way we want to play,” Rowe explained.
“The manager’s told me I can get ten goals a season and I know I can. When a manager tells you that and you believe in yourself then funny things happen in football.
“I enjoy getting forward and scoring goals. We all need to take the weight off the forward lads and chip in from time to time.”
Rowe certainly chipped in on Saturday, scoring the winning goal against Morecambe, his second of the season, to give Doncaster all three points and their first league win of the season.
Aside from his goal, Rowe praised Rovers’ ability to grind out a result in order to pick up an important win.
“I think there’s been a determination from everyone at the club to play an attractive brand of football this season but you’ve also got to have the pragmatic side so you can get results in games where you’re not playing particularly well,” he explained.
“I thought our game management was good and it was something that we needed. It was a bit edgy at the end but I always felt we were doing the right things in terms of our decision making.”
Doncaster’s next fixture comes against Manchester City Under-21’s in the Papa John’s Trophy tomorrow night, before travelling to Plymouth to face Argyle in League One on Saturday.
Having played in more advanced areas for the majority of his career, it’s perhaps no surprise that Tommy Rowe does not yet view himself as a left back, but if Richie Wellens’ system continues to give him the freedom to attack and score goals, that won’t matter one bit.
Having been the difference maker against Morecambe, and scored the week prior against Wigan, Rowe has demonstrated that his ten-goal target for the season is not unrealistic, and, for a Doncaster side currently sitting bottom of League One, struggling for goals in the striker department, their left back chipping in will be much appreciated.