Walsall v Doncaster Rovers: ‘Peter Pan’ is setting example for Rovers

Rovers' boss Paul Dickov
Rovers' boss Paul Dickov
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PAUL DICKOV may envisage James Coppinger entering the coaching and managerial realm in the future, but for the time being, the day job is too important.

The Rovers stalwart, 33, chasing the all-time club appearance record of 468 set by Colin Douglas, netted his first goal of the season in fine fashion in Tuesday’s Capital One Cup loss at Fulham and seems to be getting better with age.

Dickov is full of praise for senior man Coppinger’s impact on and off the pitch, but as for following Rob Jones in combining playing with coaching, that is likely to have to wait.

On the notion of Coppinger forging a second footballing career, Dickov said: “Eventually yes, I think he will. But he is like Peter Pan at the minute; the older he gets, the fitter and better he is getting. He has got as lot more years in him yet, playing wise.

“Players have got to use Copps as a stand-out example with the way he trains and handles himself and the way he wants to better himself all the time.

“If the younger lads see someone doing that, leading by example, then they can follow him.”

Dickov, who said that bringing in loan players is not something ‘at the forefront of his mind’, is keeping his fingers crossed that target man Curtis Main will return from injury shortly.

The Scot remains confident that the former Middlesbrough forward will be a big player this season, despite him being restricted to three appearances so far after picking up a knee injury.

Dickov added: “Without having a lot of games in pre-season, his performance in the Yeovil game was fantastic.

“He was just finding his feet with us, so it was a blow to lose him. But, hopefully, he will be back soon.

“Curtis will be a big player for us this year and will score a lot of goals and create a lot as well.”