I think I am, by journalistic law, contractually obliged to begin this piece with some sort of reference to a revolving door, so consider that it. Anyway, as Matt Mills leaves to head south and seek his fortune, Rovers have secured the services of two more players for the season ahead with the signing of recent trialists Mustapha Dumbaya and Byron Webster.
Neither player comes with a particular Championship pedigree, with Mustapha Dumbaya’s contract with Rovers his first as a professional footballer. Until now Dumbaya’s footballing career has come on the Isthmian non-league pitches of the London area, with Grays Athletic, Wingate & Finchley, Maidenhead, and Potters Bar Town amongst his back catlogue. The summer have brought Dumbaya trials with Hereford United, Gillingham and finally Rovers where he has impressed enough at full-back for a one year deal. Dumbaya has been handed the number 24 shirt vacated by Gordon Greer and is expected to be included in Saturday’s squad for the season opener at Watford.
Byron Webster’s own footballing history is no more conventional that of Dumbaya, but is arguably more impressive. Webster began his career with York City progressing from the Minstermen’s youth set-up to the first team, making his debut in the 2004-05 Conference season. Two years on with opportunities limited Webster was released from his contract at his request and saw out the season playing non-league football with Harrogate Town adn Whitby Town.
However, in the summer of 2007, after a successful trial Webster made the surprise move to join FK SIAD Most in the Czech top-flight Gambrinus Liga. Webster suffered relegation at the end of his first season with Most (now known as FK Banik Most), but remained for a further season establishing himself well in the Czech League. Looking for a return to the UK Webster had trials at Motherwell adn Bury before settling with Rovers and the chance to work again with his former York coach Paul Stanicliffe. The 22-year-old defender has signed a two year deal with Rovers and will wear the number 23 shirt vacated by Jason Price.