Canaries loanee Toffolo has become a ‘really important’ player for Doncaster
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Norwich City left-back Harry Toffolo is on loan at League One side Doncaster until early January.
The 22-year-old has made 11 appearances for Rovers so far, largely playing as a wing-back.
We asked Liam Hoden from the Sheffield Star how one of City’s FA Youth Cup winners had been performing...
How has Harry been getting on with Rovers?
After a slow start he has become a really important player for the team. Harry was in a very difficult position as he was brought in at the 11th hour to cover the injury to Danny Andrew, who is out for the season with knee ligament damage. Andrew had made a big impression during his first few weeks at the club and looked like becoming a key man, so Toffolo had big shoes to fill. He started just one of his first six matches at Rovers – and came off at half time in that one after a poor performance. Darren Ferguson suggested his fitness was not up to scratch due to not playing many games. But he has started every game since the start of October and his form has rapidly improved.
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Is it correct he has largely been playing as a wing-back?
He has. Initially Rovers were playing with a 4-4-2 diamond, occasionally switching to a back three but are now regularly deploying a 3-4-3 with Toffolo on the left of the four in a wing back role. And he has really impressed. He gets up and down the flanks very well, finds space in advanced areas and delivers dangerous balls. He is fairly often up alongside the front three as Rovers build attacks.
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What have been his strengths?
His delivery of crosses and his eye for space. Rovers are all about aggressive possession football and movement is key to that. Toffolo has fitted in well.
And which areas does he still need to work on?
Arguably he still needs to work on some aspects of the defensive side of the game but in the current system there is not a particular emphasis on this for him. He does track opposition wingers and full-backs pretty well. Overall, currently he is performing very well.
Do you think he is ready for the Championship?
I’m not sure. It is a considerable step up and although the gap in styles between the two divisions has narrowed, it still remains a different game in League One. You would expect he would face bigger tests of his defensive abilities in the Championship and certainly would come up against better defenders going the other way. Right now he looks a very solid League One player but a full season in the third tier would do him no harm in preparing him for a real shot at the Championship.
Would Rovers fans like to keep Harry for the rest of the season?
Certainly. He has done a very good job in replacing the popular Danny Andrew so far so I don’t think anyone would be keen to try something different at left-back or wing-back come January.
• Doncaster take on one of Toffolo’s previous loan clubs, Rotherham United, in League One at 12.30pm today