DONCASTER Rovers may be bottom of the Championship but the club has come top in a prestigious community table.
Rovers’ commitment to working in the community has seen them top the 2010-11 league for community player involvement ahead of all 92 league clubs in England and Wales
Rovers came out on top for player involvement during the season after giving support to projects such as education (128), health (80), social inclusion (52), anti racism/racial awareness (62), girls/women, soccer schools (16), disabilities (35), presentations (163), match day events (26), training ground visits (336), others including charity and hospital visits (306).
In all, Rovers’ player involvement totalled 1,228 visits, well ahead of Premier League giants Chelsea, second with 1,066.
Cardiff City were the second-placed Championship club with 970 visits.
John Hudson PFA Director of Community, said: “Congratulations go to Doncaster Rovers who have consistently provided an exceptional high number of players over the past three seasons.”
Rovers Community chief executive Eric Randerson said: “Everyone at the club has contributed to the player involvement.
“It has been a real team effort, with the Community Foundation staff and the players understanding the importance of having a positive presence in their community.”
Rovers’ chief executive Dave Morris said: “‘Our community section spearheads the club’s commitment to the community.
“We are extremely proud to work with Eric and his team. We know that from feedback from various organistations worked with that they find the visits extremely beneficial. We will continue to improve and increase the level of commitment to the community.”
Mark Wilson, James Coppinger and James O’Connor were highlighted for their initiative in player fund-raising for the NSPCC, which culminated in Inca Trail expedition in June.
James Chambers, George Friend, Mustapha Dumbuya, Robbie Clarke, Paul Keegan and Gary Woods were all highlighted for their contribution to Show Racism the Red Card.
Rovers have continued this season with the same commitment to the community with recent visits to local schools such as Stirling School, Windhill School, Mexborough and Copley Junior School, Sprotbrough. Chambers, Keegan and teenager James Baxendale visited Copley Road Scool on Friday to take part in a question-and-answer session with the whole school.
All three players were impressed by the standard of questions, likewise school headmaster Alan White by their replies.
“The professionals were really good; they had a nice manner with the children and that was good to see,” he told The Star. “They all gave full answers to the questions.”