Rovers have landed the signing of Richie Smallwood on an initial two year deal, with an option of a third. The 26 year old, who is primarily a holding midfielder, spent 3 seasons at Rotherham United after turning an emergency loan into a permanent stay, before deciding to swap Yorkshire for Lancashire.
Having worked under Tony Mowbray at Middlesbrough, Smallwood knows the exact requirements of the gaffer and was quick to pay homage to the former Celtic boss on the club’s official website; “I have worked with the manager before, I know how he works and the style of play that he likes, which was good.”
The former Scunthorpe loanee also claimed that despite having several offers at his disposal, including an extension at the New York Stadium, he had made up his mind as soon as Rovers came calling; “I’m absolutely over the moon. It’s a massive club that’s looking to do big things and I want to be a part of that. When this opportunity came up, there was only one place I was looking to come. It was an easy decision.”
The former England U18s international is very familiar with third tier football, having played in this division for Rotherham and Scunthorpe, whilst also gaining promotion back to the Championship with Rotherham as a result of the playoffs, as the Millers beat Leyton Orient 4-3 on penalties, one of which was scored by Smallwood, who later claimed was the first ever penalty he had taken professionally.
The former Boro midfielder becomes Rovers’ second signing of the season, with Tony Mowbray hoping for a few more additions before the season opener on the 5th of August away at Southend United.