sport

Dickov hails Tomlinson passion

Doncaster manager Paul Dickov believes Louis Tomlinson's joint takeover of the club can provide a springboard to success.

Twenty-two-year-old Tomlinson, who is a member of the hugely successful five-piece boy-band, announced the deal together with former chairman John Ryan on Thursday.

The pop-star will share the ownership 50-50 with Ryan and Dickov believes the takeover can only be a good thing as Rovers look to bounce back from last season's relegation from the Sky Bet Championship.

"You see a lot of takeovers happening these days when the owners don't have much interest in the football club," Dickov told Press Association Sport.

"I think we're quite unique now at this club in that we have two co-chairmen who are both passionate supporters.

"Louis came down the training ground numerous times last season and he comes to games.

"He's not just the global star that everybody sees in concerts and on the TV - he's a proper fan and he's got a proper passion for the club.

"Put that with John's passion as well - both for the club and the town - it gives me a great platform to move forward."

Ryan, who resigned as chairman in November after a 15-year association with the club, described the takeover as a "multi-million pound" deal.

The duo have put a six-figure sum into The Tomlinson Ryan Trust for the benefit of Rovers and are aiming to raise a total of BŁ2million with the help of donations.

Dickov is delighted to have extra funds to bring in players this summer and is certain Tomlinson and Ryan have long-term ambitions.

"For the first time in five years as a manager I'm going to get backed," Dickov said.

"I'm going to bring my own team together and we're going to have a good go at getting straight back up again.

"It's not just a media circus for six months - they're in it for the long term and that can only be beneficial for the club, for the town and internationally as well it's going to create a lot of interest."

Rovers were relegated to League One on the final day of last season but both Tomlinson and Ryan are ambitious, targeting promotion to the Championship and then the Premier League.

"It's a pressure I like," Dickov said. "As a player and a manager I've put massive pressure on myself to be successful.

"As a player I wanted to be the best I could and I was told I would never play in the Premier League and I'd never get to play internationally and I did it.

"This gives me the chance to do it as a manager as well."

Tomlinson's arrival offers the possibility of tickets for One Direction concerts - an opportunity Dickov admits he has already taken advantage of.

"Ive already been - I took my kids to a concert at the Etihad a couple of weeks ago," the Rovers boss added.

"I enjoyed it but then I have to say that, he's my boss now. I'll probably have to learn the lyrics to all the songs too."