Date:Saturday July 10 2010
Some Clarets fans will have been disheartened by news that striker, Billy Sharp has this week decided to leave his beloved Sheffield United afterall but not to Burnley but Doncaster Rovers. Sharp made his mark on loan at the Keepmoat last season scoring about one goal on average in every two games.
He signed for them permanently this week for a club record fee of £1.15m. This was despite all the hype about him wanting to have another go at trying to establish himself in the first team at the club he supported as a kid.
Brian Laws of course used to be his boss at Scunthorpe and Sean O'Driscoll, manager of Doncaster Rovers was in the frame with Laws to take over after Coyle left in January this year.
It is perhaps a snub to Laws then that the reason Sharp gave for going to the Keepmoat was due to the manager.
He said after his move:
'The gaffer is a big reason why I have come here. I learned a lot from him and enjoyed my time working with him.
'All of the lads have been brilliant and it worked last year - hopefully it can carry on.'
Laws has however comforted himself this week by making statements that he fully understands Sharp's decision and puts it down to the fact that Doncaster is close enough to Sheffield to avoid having to upsticks and cause a family upheavel. Sharp has only just returned from honeymoon so Laws figures a lifestyle change involving a move to Burnley could be the last thing that Sharp needs or wants.
Speaking to the Lancashire Telegraph, Laws said:
"I don`t know why people would surmise that I`m disappointed over it.
"I certainly wasn`t banking on signing Billy.
"We`ve spoken to a lot of players and he was one of them.
'It doesn`t mean to say that we were expecting him to sign.
"I`ve worked with Billy before. However, I know what the facts are.
'Billy is a Sheffield boy and his family are from Sheffield.
"His wife is from Sheffield and he`s just got married.
'It was always going to be a drag to take him away from Sheffield'
"He wants to play football, but he wants to be happy at the same time and maybe moving away isn`t going to make him happy.
"That`s probably one of his major reasons. It wasn`t about the money - it was more about where he was going to be based.
"The fact is he certainly couldn`t stay over in Sheffield if he signed for Burnley.
"There were other little factors as well, and we talked at length about those things.
Date:Saturday July 10 2010
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