DONCASTER Rovers star James Coppinger is likely to face questions about his future plans when he helps out former boss Dave Penney at his Football Academy at the Keepmoat Stadium complex tomorrow night.
Coppinger, who was interesting Ipswich Town at the end of last season, is one of the contracted players whose future has been up in the air all summer following Rovers relegation to League One.
“I’m sure that those youngsters and their parents who follow Rovers will be asking him what his situation is,” Penney told The Star.
Under contract until the end of the 2013-14 season, during which time he would be due a testimonial, Coppinger is currently the club’s longest-serving player having being signed by Penney in 2004 whilst playing at Exeter City for what has turned out to be a bargain £35,000.
“I’ve kept in touch with James and I spoke to him a couple of weeks ago about coming down and taking a session, as did Jason Price the other week, and he said he would after his holidays,” he said. “He was away last week but he’s back now.
“The players are always up for it and they are always happy to come down and do a bit of coaching - the young kids, especially.
“It is just a case of freshening things up and looking at things from a different angle and letting the kids hear a different voice.
“A few of the younger kids might not know him whilst others will aspire to be the sort of player he has been.
“As we all know Copps has got great technique and will be able to show the kids some different touches.”
Penney rates Coppinger as one of the best value-for-money signings that he made during his time in charge.
“I signed some good ones such as Steve Foster, Michael McIndoe, Tim Ryan and Paul Heffernan but in terms of what he has achieved, and for what we paid for him, I would consider him one one of my best signings.
“We watched him a couple of times and liked what we saw - things such as his balance and his touch and his awareness - and everyone has seen that since he joined Rovers and he has been one of the club’s top players for five or six years.
“I hope he stays on at the club and if he does I think Rovers will do well.”
Coppinger will help coach both sessions, starting with the five to nine-year-old group at 6pm, followed by the nine to 12 year-old group at 7pm. The sessions are open to anyone and cost £4.