Doncaster Rovers: Stephen Bywater ‘will tell it as it is’ after sealing Rovers move

Stephen Bywater
Stephen Bywater

Stephen Bywater will not be afraid to upset his new team mates in the quest for success at Rovers.

Boss Paul Dickov has warned there will be no holding back from the goalkeeper, who today rubberstamped a deal with Rovers until the end of the season.

The 33-year-old was released from his contract at Millwall earlier this week and was quickly snapped up by a Rovers side left in the lurch by Sam Johnstone’s loan recall on Monday.

And Dickov says Bywater is as hungry as ever for success.

“Even when he’s playing week in, week out, he has a massive desire to do well,” Dickov told the Star.

“He’s a little bit old school, in the nicest possible way.

“He’s a winner.

“If he has to upset a few people in the changing room, he will. And I don’t mind that at all.

“But he’ll also help with people around him as well.”

Bywater has played just 27 times in the last three campaigns, with 14 of those appearances coming during a three month loan at Gillingham earlier this season.

The former England U19 international found himself as understudy to Chris Kirkland at Sheffield Wednesday after helping the Owls to promotion from League One in 2012.

And after switching to Millwall 18 months ago, Bywater was unable to move ahead of Republic of Ireland international David Forde in the pecking order.

Despite his lack of game time, Dickov says Bywater is phenomenally fit, largely thanks to his yoga routine.

He said: “Stephen looks after himself.

“I’m not too sure about him doing yoga for two hours every morning but he makes sure he looks after his body and he’s as fit as a fiddle.

“He trained with us on Thursday and he’ll be ready for selection on Saturday.”

Overall, Dickov is delighted to be reunited with Bywater, whom he played alongside for a short period at Derby County.

The Rovers boss said: “He’s played the majority of his football a lot higher up.

“He’s been promoted out of this division so he knows what it’s all about and what it takes. We’re delighted to have him.”

Dickov indicated he hopes to extend Bywater’s stay beyond the initial end-of-season term.

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