Jon Dahl Tomasson is now in situ as Rovers’ head coach, but what are the immediate tasks that he will face?



There is no denying this is a new era at Rovers. Should Ryan Nyambe follow Darragh Lenihan in leaving the club, then every player in the squad will have either been signed, or handed their debut, by former boss Tony Mowbray.

Rovers are now working under a director of football model, and with a head coach, and Tomasson will want to quickly get his methods across to the players.

That may well take time, which is where the pre-season friendlies come in, and the importance of those, and the training sessions leading in to them, become imperative.

There will be no quick fixes, and there will be adjustments not only on the pitch, but off it, with every manager having a different way of communicating with his players.

Tomasson will want to set his own culture, put forward his philosophies, and this is where the squad’s ability to take on messages and information will prove crucial.



In the same way that a chain of command between Rovers’ new director of football, Gregg Broughton, chief executive Steve Waggott and the owners needs to be outlined, where Tomasson fits into the process is also important.

Tomasson has been appointed as ‘head coach’, the usual title given to the boss when working under a director of football model.

With Broughton’s remit including recruitment, and other first-team areas, Tomasson will be able to throw all of his attentions into coaching, and that is understood to be where his passion lies.

There will undoubtedly be overlap with certain aspects, but having accountability will be key, with previously Mowbray overseeing much of the football side of the club.



While Rovers have the core of a strong squad, they are in need of depth adding in a number of areas.

The central midfield ranks have been hit with the departures of Joe Rothwell, Bradley Johnson and Jacob Davenport.

An out-and-out striker was overlooked in the January transfer window, and with uncertainty over the future of Ben Brereton, at least one forward option will be on the agenda.

The departure of Lenihan leaves a big hole in the centre of Rovers’ defence, while the loss of five loanees, including player of the year Jan Paul van Hecke, are other gaps that need filling.

Tomasson will have time to acquaint himself with the squad when they return to pre-season training in full next week, with Rovers also set to spend some time away from their training base prior to the first pre-season friendly at Accrington Stanley on July 9.

Knowledge on potential targets will have been drawn up by the recruitment team, but Tomasson will too want his own input on where he feels is in need of strengthening.



A lot of experience has left the building this summer, with club captain Lenihan and the most experienced player in Johnson having moved on.

Whether through recruitment or new figures emerging from within the squad, Rovers will need to form a new leadership group with so many of those tasked with those responsibilities having moved on.

There will be a new captain to appoint, with Lewis Travis looking to be the leading contender for that, but responsibilities will need to be shared around.   

That will come as Tomassson evaluates his squad, and given his flexibility during his time at Malmo, the likelihood is that he will marry his philosophies and beliefs with the squad at his disposal.

Discussions over the squad will have formed part of the interview process, but working with the group day in, day out, will give the new head coach a clearer understanding of how to shape the team moving forward.


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