Doncaster Rovers star Madger Gomes refreshed after loneliness of lockdown

A BOYHOOD fan of a club known as the ‘Yellow Submarine’ and someone who previously spent a spell in the The Beatles’ home city of Liverpool, Madger Gomes is determined not to be a nowhere man at Doncaster Rovers.
Doncaster Rovers' Madger Gomes: Big season ahead. Picture: PADoncaster Rovers' Madger Gomes: Big season ahead. Picture: PA
Doncaster Rovers' Madger Gomes: Big season ahead. Picture: PA

After failing to make a key breakthrough at Villarreal – the team he loves – Liverpool, Leeds United and French outfit Sochaux, Gomes now finds himself at Rovers and is getting by with a little help from his club, family and friends.

Being away from his home in Alicante during lockdown was tough, but the Spaniard accepts that it represents an occupational hazard in his life as a professional footballer – he has also spent a spell in Croatia at Istra 1961.

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The 23-year-old has found a footballing home at Doncaster and is making the most of his chance to rebuild his career under a manager whose great strength is developing players technically and tactically in Darren Moore.

A maiden goal for his club last weekend in a potentially definitive second season is not a bad start to 2020-21.

Gomes said: “Hopefully, this season, I can have more minutes and do very well.

“I had a look at how we played last season in League One and this can help me this season to do better and give good performances. If I can help the team with more goals, I will be even more happy.

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“I am from Alicante. For me, it is the best place in Spain. But I have lived here in England for a long time. I have stayed in Liverpool and Leeds and now I am in Doncaster and am very happy and hope we can do very well this season.”

On his idols growing up, he continued: “I support Villarreal and I have some friends who play in the first team. My favourite players were Marcos Senna and Santi Cazorla. They are two midfielders as well.”

Gomes’s sunny disposition belies the fact that, as a relatively young player away from home, 2020 has been testing.

Spain was hit savagely as Covid-19 wreaked havoc across parts of Europe in the Spring.

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With England also subsequently placed on lockdown and life effectively on hold, Gomes found it tough but his support network helped.

As the situation improved and restrictions were eased, Gomes made it back to Spain for a summer break – he quarantined afterwards – and suitably refreshed, he is now embarking on a big season in his career.

Gomes, whose Rovers deal ends next June, said: “It has been hard for everyone, not just me. But my situation is very hard as I have half of my family in Spain.

“The most important thing is that they feel healthy and no-one has this situation with Corona. Everyone feels good. It is hard because I want to stay with my family. But this is my team. I just want to play football and wherever I stay, they will support me. Hopefully, everyone will feel better because the situation is different (now) than before. It will be better for everyone.

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“I am feel lucky and I am very close to the family and they are always coming to see me – my brother, my sisters and my mum and then my dad lives in France and he comes every time he can to see me. I am lucky.

“It is easy as I speak on Face Time every day and my mum calls. Sometimes, it is annoying, but she wants the best for me!

“I went for a month in Spain and had a very nice time and came back here two months ago and stayed in quarantine for two weeks, but now everything is fine.”

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James Mitchinson

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