James Coppinger says it feels like a new era has dawned at Doncaster Rovers.
The 35-year-old winger - currently preparing for his 13th season at the club - thinks Rovers were ‘riding on the fact they were in the Championship’ the season before last.
Having now dropped into League Two, Coppinger is optimistic Rovers can benefit from a completely new start.
“What happened last season has given the club an opportunity to rebuild,” Coppinger, the club’s leading all-time appearance maker, told the Free Press.
“I think the season before last wasn’t brilliant, although we stayed in the league.
“For me now though it feels like a new era for the club. It’s a new start.
“We were sort of still riding on the fact that we were in the Championship a season ago (2014/15).
“Whereas now it’s Doncaster Rovers in League Two.
“We’re rebuilding and we want a return to those days, but we can’t look back, we need to look forward.
“The club has an opportunity to re-structure and go forward under a new manager.
“The owners, the people in charge and the management have done a fantastic job over the summer,” he added.
“Now it’s up to the players to build on that and take things forward.”
Coppinger’s sense of a new start has only been heightened by a fresh feel at Cantley Park.
“Obviously the manager has been wanting to put his stamp on the place. But when you come in during a season it’s difficult,” he said.
“There’s a freshness down at the training ground and things have changed down there a bit.
“It looks like a different place and when you go in you get a different feel.
“It’s always good to come in and feel like things are moving forwards.
“It needed to be done I think.”