Category Archives: history and stats

DRFC – Top moustachioed eleven of all time

Doncaster Rovers – Top moustachioed eleven of all time

Doncaster Rovers best moustache 11At times I don’t think I’m all there really.  Whilst in front of the mirror mindlessly hacking away at my face recently I, for some still unknown reason, started to think about Rovers players from the past with memorable facial hair.  This slowly meandered into those with full beards, smaller beards and of course led to moustaches only.

My own shave over, this brief idling of time and mind should’ve ended there too, but no.  I found myself with a pen and paper and decided to come up with a best 11.  Not only that but it had to have clear boundaries.  Inclusions had to have 3 key features.  1.  Moustache only – fair enough if they had sported other variants but their selection in this band had to be based on top lip only.  2. I had to find a picture of them with lip foliage, in their Rovers days, to get in.  Only those hairs cultivated during a spell with Rovers would qualify.  3.Entry based primarily on facial hair, not ability, though this would be used as a tie breaker should two moustaches reach a similar level.

Ian Snodin Doncaster Rovers

Rovers Snod – No
Everton Snod – Yes
Harsh, but rules are rules

Ian Snodin did not make it based on the rules above…. When with us, teenage Snodin could only manage this rather poor, lightweight version which just didn’t cut the mustard.  Everton Snod would have made it easily, the grown up tache was splendid, but check rule 2, he doesn’t qualify.. (I’m not here to win friends, this is serious).



Here we go:

Doncaster rovers Willie Boyd

1. Boyd – GK

1. Willie Boyd.  Not much to choose from Keeper wise, though in truth Willie is there on merit.   Tremendous ‘dark smudge’ style effort.  Big favourite among the Belle Vue faithful.




Doncaster rovers Willie Boyd

2. Les Robinson – RB

2.  Les Robinson.  Elegant and gentrified, a moustache which makes me feel proud.  Not just a smart moustache, Les was a top full back.  He was always reliable from the spot, always seemed to put them in the same place, always scored.  Les is our penalty taker too.



Fred Robinson Doncaster Rovers

3. Fred Robinson – LB

3.  Fred Robinson.  Reliable and consistent left back who made over 100 appearances for Doncaster Rovers during the 70’s.

Look at the weight of that ‘tache, truly a belter and contender for “top ‘tache”.



Doncaster Rovers Dave Cusack

4. Dave Cusack – CB

4.  Dave Cusack.  Two spells in the 80’s over 100 games, almost exclusively with insulation on his lip.  During his second spell he became player manager at the age of 29.  Given his managerial experience, he is duly installed as Player manager too.



Carl Swan Doncaster Rovers

5. Carl Swan – CB

5.  Carl Swan.  Enough said really.  Well known in the football world, subject of a book; but look at the quality of moustache, that is everything I could’ve asked for.  An absolute cracker, just about the definitive footballers moustache.



Joe Laidlaw Doncaster Rovers

6. Joe Laidlaw – CM

6.  Joe Laidlaw.  Hard tackling midfielder who could play as well.  Notched a club record of 8 converted penalties in a season.  Top player, top moustache.




an Miller Doncaster Rovers

7. Ian Miller – RW

7.  Ian Miller.  Flying winger, ‘windy’ provided ample ammo for his strikers during the 70’s and was supremely talented out wide – with a brilliant tache to boot.  Seriously, check out the bristles on that.  It’s not clear whether to shave them or sweep the drive with that?



ncaster Rovers Dave Bentley

8. Dave Bentley – CM

8.  Dave Bentley.  Classy, ball playing midfielder for the club at the end of the 70’s.  The quality of his moustache, allied with his ability on the ball means he is our playmaker.  Look at that beauty, bet you couldn’t get a comb through that.



Doncaster Rovers Peter Kitchen

9. Peter Kitchen

9.  Peter Kitchen.  One of the clubs most efficient accumulator of goals, Kitch scored over 20 goals a season consistently, all with a tache which matched his considerable goal scoring prowess.  Simple tache, but effective.  Does what you’d expect, no frills.  Played with great effect up top in the 70’s with alongside….


Doncaster Rovers Brendan O'Callaghan

10. Brendan O’Callaghan

10.  Brendan O’Callaghan.  Peter Kitchen’s partner in goals and facial hair.  The pair terrorized defences in the 70’s and they were the only partnership we could have gone for.  Big Bren’s ‘Horse Shoe’ as known in the trade, is a proper mans ‘tache.



Doncaster Rovers Glynn Snodin

11. Glynn Snodin – LW

11.  Glynn Snodin.  Went through the full range of facial hair through the 70’s and early 80’s but the example I unearth showed a neatly refined example of a moustache, matching his play and getting him into the 11.

There you have it, an hour or so of my life I’ll never get back, but a selection like that deserves commemorating nevertheless. Let me know if you have any additions. I may go and do something a bit more productive now. Wait a minute, I wonder which Rovers players are left handed…

The Team in Full.  Who has the best ‘tache?

Doncaster Rovers best moustache 11


Doncaster Rovers, Kowalski, Darby, NimmoSubs:

Andy Kowalski,


Duane Darby.


Ian Nimmo,



The Grounds

Intake Ground 1885-1916.

The Intake ground played host to the club during its infancy and during its first few steps it has absolutely no facilities.  The teams were forced to get changed and discuss tactics some 500 yards away at a local pub, before making their way down to the ground for the game.  Three years into its stay at Intake, the club erected a stand at the side of the playing surface which included turnstiles and a ticket office, with a ‘shed’ used as a press office added a couple of years later.

Unfortunately the stand was blown down twice in the coming years by particularly inclement Doncaster weather and had to be rebuilt with dressing rooms included around the turn of the century.

The clubs record attendance for a match at the Intake Ground was over 6,000 against Middlesbrough in 1902.

During the First World War, with the club ceasing operations, the ground was requisitioned by the war dept. and used as a military depot.


The Bennetthorpe Ground 1920-1922

After the reformation a the club following the end of the war, the Club was based at The Bennetthorpe Ground as a short term venue whilst negotiations were conducted by the council.  The Club had wanted to move to the Low Pastures site, but restrictions imposed by the local council made an agreement difficult however these issues were resolved and the club had a two year spell at their temporary home with the team being watched by the clubs highest gate on the opening day of the 1921-22 season, with 7,219 people watching the game against Gainsborough Trinity.


Belle Vue 1922-2006

With negotiations for the Low Pastures site concluded, the club took up the lease and moved into ‘Belle Vue’ which would become home for more than 80 years.  The ground was opened on Saturday 26th August 1922 for the Midland league game against Gainsborough which attracted a crowd of over 10,000.

Belle Vue originally sported a main stand for seating 4,000 spectators with a terraced area in front which catered for a further 3,000 guests and in 1924 shelter was added to the opposite side of the pitch, meaning those standing on the ‘Popular side’ had the luxury of staying dry!

Subsequently the Main Stand which had been erected at The Bennetthorpe Ground was transported to the new site and dropped into place on the ‘Town End’ at Belle Vue!  By 1935 turnstiles, fencing and gates had been added as the Club sought entry into the Football League and the ground had an impressive capacity of around 40,000.

The following years saw a lot of changes to the Club, but Belle Vue remained basically the same until 1985 when the ‘Safety of Sports grounds Act’ which resulted from the Bradford fire caused major changes and the Town end had to be pulled down and £100,000 worth of fireproofing work carried out to the Main Stand, slashing capacity to around 10,000 before the Hillsborough disaster imposed further restrictions, dropping capacity to 7,294, though the ground had the unusual distinction of being the only ground to have separate tunnels for the home and away teams.

Following the clubs promotion to the Football league, ‘hospitality areas’ were introduced to the Town end, with double storey portacabins lining the back of the stands until the final game against Nottingham Forest, on boxing day 2006.

By the end, Belle Vue was tired, out dated and impractical.  But it was home.  The crowd was almost on top of the pitch and the atmosphere of a full house inside Belle Vue was unlike any other.  I remember clambering over the pot holed car park, up the old, creaking wooden stair case at the back of the main stand and taking my numbingly firm seat on a length of railway sleeper, sitting next to my Dad, watching the game as best as I could through the restricted view afforded by the steel supports in front of the main stand, but it was and always will be special, and for me and thousands of others, the name Belle Vue could not have been more apt.

The Pitch at Belle Vue was laid on top of an Ash tip, which meant that the turf always drained well.  Always immaculate, with the turf kept in tip top condition, it was rumoured that the Rovers pitch was wanted by Wembley stadium!


The Keepmoat Stadium

The first game came on New Year’s Day 2007 as the side beat Huddersfield in a League One match. The record attendance to date at the Keepmoat was 15,002 for a League game against Leeds Utd in 2008.

The stadium was built at a cost of around £30m, designed to provide a high quality sporting environment with a community focus.  It has a capacity of 15,231 with improved seating and disabled access bars, club shop, hospitality areas and a mini stadium on the same site with a 500 seat stand and running track.  Multiple outdoor training pitches, and a fitness and health centre.

The Keepmoat Stadium has truly been a success and has finally dragged the club up to date, with the impressive facilities behind the providing a base for the clubs continued on the field success and in time the Keepmoat will produce its own stars, its own names and most importantly its own memories.

Record Goal Scorers

Doncaster Rovers Record Goal Scorers, 50 +

(Senior competitions only, excludes war leagues)

Tom Keetley               186 goals

Alick Jeffrey               139 goals

Bert Tindall                 134 goals

Peter Kitchen              105 goals

Brendan O’Callaghan 77 goals

Colin Booth                62 goals

Colin Douglas             62 goals

Glynn Snodin              62 goals

Peter Doherty              59 goals

Paul Todd                   56 goals

Stan Burton                 54 goals

Paul Heffernan            54 goals

Bert Turner                  53 goals

Ray Harrison               50 goals

Clarrie Jordan              50 goals


Record Attendance: 37,149 vs. Hull City

The clubs record attendance came in 1948 in a Division 3 north game at Belle Vue.  The Rovers played host to Hull City on the 2nd October 1948 in a match which attracted 37,149 spectators and ended 0-0.

The clubs record attendance since the move to the new Keepmoat stadium came on the 1st April 2008 as 15,001 watched the league 1 game against Leeds Utd.

Record Victory: 10-0 vs. Darlington

The Rovers record league victory came on the 25th January 1964 in a division 4 match against Darlington.  The Rovers enjoyed a number of high scoring games against the ‘Quakers’ throughout the 1960’s with this being by far the most one sided with Rovers running out 10-0 winners!

Record Defeat: 0-12 vs. Small Heath

In contrast the clubs record defeat was at the hands of Small Heath in a second division game on the 11th April 1903 when the club, still in its infancy, were beaten 12-0.

Highest League Scorer in Season: Clarrie Jordan, 42,

Clarrie Jordan scored the clubs record number of league goals in one season.  The forward found the back of the net 42 times during the record breaking season in 1946-47. His incredible personal goal tally led the side to the Division 3 (N) league title.

Most Goals in a game: Tom Keetley 6

The most goals scored by a Rovers player in one match came during the 1928-29 season.  Tom Keetley scored 6 of the Rovers goals in the thrilling 7-4 win at Ashington.

Most Capped Player:

Len Graham is the clubs most capped player, winning 14 caps for Northern Ireland whilst a Rovers player.

Record Appearances:

2016 saw Rovers legend James Copping pass the 500 appearance mark and in doing some became the first Rovers player to play 500 times for the club.  Second on the list is Fred Emery making 417 outings in the league for the club between 1924 and 1928 and played in an additional 20 FA Cup matches during his Rovers career, just ahead of Colin Douglas.  Fans favourite ‘Duggie’ made 404 league appearances for the club in two spells between 1981 and 1993.

Youngest Player:

Alick Jeffrey made his Rovers debut at the age of 15 years, 229 days in 1954 against Fulham at Belle Vue to become the clubs youngest ever player.

Record League Goal scorer:

Tom Keetley amassed 180 league goals between 1923 and 1929 for the Rovers following the First World War, with the club being re-elected into the league at the start of the decade.  Despite his outstanding personal record, the club never managed a finish higher than fourth place and did not achieve promotion during his time with the club.

Highest League Finish:

The Rovers best overall finish came at the end of the 1901-02 season when they finished in 7th Place in Division 2 during the clubs first ever year in the football league.

Highest Number of points:

The clubs highest points tally was recorded in 2004 when the Rovers finished champions of the third division and amassed 92 points from over the course of the league campaign.

Record Transfer Fee Paid:

During the summer of 2010 Rovers smashed their transfer record to sign striker Billy Sharp from Sheffield United.  Sharp had spent much of the previous season on loan and ended the campaign as the sides top goal scorer which prompted the club to pay a record £1.15m fee to secure his services on a full time basis.  A couple of years later, as the teams fortunes slipped, Sharp moved on to eventual league winners Southampton, leaving Rovers as a true fans favourite and modern day legend.

Record Transfer Fee Received:

During the close season in 2009, Reading paid £2m to sign Rovers player Matt Mills.  The power central defender had joined the Rovers on a full time basis the year before, having spent a year on loan from Manchester City.  The club had paid a then record £300,000 to sign Mills from City so his departure 12 months later represented good business (off the field at least…)

Doncaster Rovers Honours

Doncaster Rovers Honours

Rovers roll of honour is as follows;

Football League: Division 2 Best season: 7th, 1901-1902;

League 1 Champions 2013

Division 3 Champions 2003-04;

Division 3 (N) Champions 1934-35, 1946-47, 1949-50;

Division 4 Champions 1965-66, 1968-69

Runners-Up: Division 3 (N) 1937-38, 1938-39;

Division 4 Runners-up: 1983-84. Promoted 1980-81 (3rd).

League One Play-Off Final Winners: 2008

Football Conference: Play-Off Final Winners 2002-03

FA Cup: Best season 5th round, 1952, 1954, 1955, 1956

Football League Cup: Best season: 5th round, 1976

Johnstone’s Paint Trophy: Winners 2007

Conference Trophy: Winners 1999, 2000

Sheffield County Cup: Winners 1891, 1912, 1936, 1938, 1956, 1968, 1976, 1986

Midland’s Counties League: Champions 1897, 1899

Sheffield & Hallamshire Senior Cup: Winners 2001, 2002

Yorkshire Electricity Cup: Winners 1995-96

Doncaster Rovers Manager History

Doncaster Rovers managers
A definitive list of all those to take the hot seat at Doncaster Rovers from the 20’s to present day.  Doncaster Rovers manager;

Arthur Porter 1920-21

Harry Tufnell 1921-22

Arthur Porter 1922-23

Dick Ray 1923-27

David Menzies 1928-36

Fred Emery 1936-40

Bill Marsden 1944-46

Jackie Bestall 1946-49

Peter Doherty 1949-58

Jack Crayston 1958-59

Jackie Bestall 1959-60

Norman Curtis 1960-61

Danny Malloy 1961-62

Oscar Hold 1962-64

Bill Leivers 1964-66

Keith Kettleborough 1966-67

George Raynor 1967-68

Lawrie McMenemy 1968-71

Morris Setters 1971-74

Stan Anderson 1975-78

Billy Bremner 1978-85

Dave Cusack 1985-87

Dave Mackay 1987-89

Billy Bremner 1989-91

Steve Beaglehole 1991-93

Ian Atkins 1994

Sammy Chung 1994-96

Kerry Dixon 1996-97

Dave Cowling 1997

Mark Weaver 1997-98

Ian Snodin 1998-99

Steve Wignall 1999-01

Dave Penney 2001-06

Sean O’Driscoll 2006-11

Dean Saunders 2011-13

Brian Flynn 2013

Paul Dickov 2013 – 2015

Darren Ferguson 2015 – present


Doncaster Rovers manager history