John Doolan

Midfielder John Doolan signed for the Rovers at the latter end of the clubs stay in the Football Conference, quickly establishing himself in the centre of Rovers midfield during the clubs rise through the divisions.

A talented midfielder, who was comfortable on the ball and always able to link play well, Doolan will be forever loved for the part he played during a splendid 3-1 win on a wintery, misty October evening at Oakwell in 2004.

Those who looked hard enough through the Barnsley fog that night, saw John enter into a ‘hard’ challenge with his opposing number, Stephen McPhail, as the two fought for the early right to ‘play’ in the middle of the park.

 McPhail ended up in a heap on the other side of the advertising hoardings, a result which forever endeared the scouse midfielder to all Rovers fans, and instantly made him, still to this day, as welcome as a skunk at a dinner party throughout Barnsley’s gloomy streets.

The return league game at Belle Vue was drenched in cries of “Watch out, Doolan’s behind you” and taunts of “Doolan’s gonna get you” as Rovers once again hammered Barnsley 4-0 with the big man himself to a rare goal, bagging the Rovers third. 

He went on to enjoy successful spells with Blackpool and Rochdale after departing Doncaster in 2005 having made 84 league appearances for the Rovers, scoring twice.

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