Ahead of the 2023–24 season, the Bristol Rovers have been among the busier clubs in the Sky Bet League One transfer market. Joey Barton’s team is hoping to build on their success and push for a spot in the top half of the division. As we gaze into the future for what’s to come as 2024 nears, here are the three players that Barton is no doubt pinning his particular hopes on.
Aaron Collins, Striker
At 26 years old, Collins is the team’s talisman and has all the traits of a top player, so it makes sense that he takes first place on our list. He’s enjoyed an outstanding season for the Bristol Rovers, featuring in every one of the league games and garnering 27 contributions to goals, or 16 goals and 11 assists. This continues his excellent form from the club’s promotion-winning season last year.
Collins’ amazing performances saw the Welshman receive the League One Player of the Season award, beating out Jonson Clarke-Harris and Barry Bannan. He also took home the Bristol Rovers’ Player of the Season award.
Jevani Brown, Forward
29-year-old Brown was also signed over the summer. He is no doubt hoping to have a big impact on the Pirates’ team after moving to Memorial Stadium after Exeter City released him. He appeared only 27 times last season but managed to net on 12 of those and added another nine assists to his total for the Grecians before the club suspended him in February of this year.
In spite of his problems off-the-field, Brown still got voted Exeter’s Player of the Season.
Luke Thomas, Attacking Midfielder
Thomas is a 24-year-old player who honestly needs no introduction to the Bristol Rovers. He’s rejoining the Pirates after he chose not to extend his latest contract with the Tykes, coming home in a way after being part of Bristol Rover F.C.’s promotion-winning team last year.
Thomas made 31 appearances for Barnsley last season and featured in their 1/0 final defeat to Sheffield. He’s certainly proved his ability at this level of football over and over again under the manager at the time, Michael Duff.
The quality of gameplay that Thomas brings to the midfield also takes off the pressure of players like Collins, who, in spite of his incredible goals and assists statistics, can’t carry an entire team. Joey Barton was speaking about Thomas’ excellence after his recent signing, and UK and online betting NZ fans should take note of Barton’s praise.
He said that the Bristol Rovers were happy to have Thomas back on the team and added that the player had tasted promotion with the Pirates two seasons ago and that they had tried to get him to return for 2022/23. Barton said that, as things worked out, Thomas had a trip to Wembley and nearly got Barnsley up. But he’s back with the Rovers now and will play a key role on the field going forward.
Barton finished off by saying that the three-year deal they’ve signed with Thomas is a reflection of how highly they rate his potential and what he is capable of bringing to the team.
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