Doncaster Rovers: ‘I needed to get away from Manchester City’ - Ian Lawlor

Ian Lawlor
Ian Lawlor

Goalkeeper Ian Lawlor is fully accustomed to coming out of his comfort zone.

The 6’4” Dubliner left home at the age of 15 to pursue his dream of turning professional.

So he had no qualms whatsoever about leaving behind the pampered surroundings at Manchester City for a permanent move to Doncaster Rovers.

According to the 22-year-old, who impressed on his home debut against Crewe at the weekend, the time was right to move on.

“I’m quite a mature person for my age and I think I knew that was the choice I had to make,” said Lawlor, who signed a two-and-a-half year deal at the Keepmoat Stadium earlier this month.

“I’ve seen it over the years, players that have just sat there and just seen out their contracts and not had any first team games under their belt, which doesn’t help in your career when it comes to moving on. That’s what managers and clubs look for.

“I knew I needed to get away from Manchester City.

“It’s not that someone was pushing me and telling me, it’s what I wanted to do.

“I respect them massively and the work that they’ve done with me over the last seven or eight years. I have a lot to thank them for with the position that I’m in.

“But I knew the time was right to move on and get more regular first team football.

“I’m delighted that the gaffer gave me the opportunity to come in, obviously on a permanent basis which is even better.

“I know that I can get my head down for the next couple of years and work hard, play as many games as possible and help this big club as much as I can.”

He added: “I’m a person that can adapt to any situation. I’ve been living away from home since I was 15 so it doesn’t really bother me.

“I’ve been on loan at Barnet and Bury so I’ve been thrown in at the deep end quite early and it’s just learning to deal with it.”

Lawlor graduated from Dublin club Home Farm, which also produced the likes of Liam Brady, Johnny Giles and Ronnie Whelan.

He has represented Republic of Ireland at Under 19 and Under 21 level and has also been called up to the full squad, although is yet to make a senior appearance.