Doncaster Rovers v Gillingham: Ethan Galbraith hails ‘proper leader’ Tommy Rowe

Doncaster Rovers go into one of their biggest games of the season without captain Tom Anderson and the suspended Adam Clayton, but they do at least have another leader in Tommy Rowe, as well as their most talented young player ready to make his first start since January.

Today’s League One visit of Gillingham, one place and one point above in the table, had been pencilled in for Anderson’s return from plantar fasciitis but when he was unable to come through Thursday’s training ground game, that had to be shelved.

Rovers do still have the versatile Rowe, plus on-loan Manchester United midfielder Ethan Galbraith, ready to start after 45 minutes from the bench in last week’s desperately disappointing 4-0 defeat at Cheltenham Town.

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Galbraith says Rowe is a player he looks up to. “Tommy Rowe is massive for us young lads,” says the 20-year-old Northern Ireland international.

Ethan Galbraith of Doncaster Rovers. (Picture: Julian Finney/Getty Images)

“He’s getting a bit older but you’d still think he was 23 the way he runs around a pitch. On and off the pitch he’s a top professional and great with all us younger lads.

“We’ll do stuff after sessions and he’s a top guy.

“When I had a spell at right-back he’d played left-back so he was helping me out a bit there. He’s a proper leader,” added Galbraith.

Rovers are four points from safety having played a game more than those around them so today is the sort of game they have to take full advantage of.

“Last week’s looked similar, so they will have to show they have improved on the flakiness which makes them so vulnerable when behind.

“We definitely need to get points off the teams in and around us, they’re bigger games for us but every game now is massive,” says Galbraith.

“The spirit’s massive. Last weekend wasn’t great but everyone’s worked hard all week.

“We’ve spoken about it a few times, once we go a goal down we definitely have to improve at getting back in games.”

John Bostock is not yet match-fit enough to compensate for the loss of midfield experience Clayton’s red card last week will cause. Reo Griffiths is a doubt with an Achilles problem.