Still stuck in 24th and last spot in the League One standings, following their 15th loss of the campaign last weekend, Doncaster are six points adrift of safety at the season’s halfway stage.
Their latest setback was all the more difficult to take, having raced into a three-goal lead before the half-hour mark at Morecambe, before eventually succumbing to a morale-crushing 4-3 defeat.
Such a capitulation will also hurt new boss Gary McSheffrey, as he finally saw his goal-shy side find some form in the final third, but they somehow squandered their lead after the break and were beaten by two strikes in the final 10 minutes.
Former Coventry striker McSheffrey was appointed on a full-time basis last month, after previously overseeing four fixtures on an interim basis. Under his guidance, Rovers picked up their first league win in seven attempts against Shrewsbury in December, but they have since lost their last two while conceding seven times in the process.
Doncaster’s descent to rock bottom therefore leaves their status as a third-tier club in peril heading into the second half of the 2021-22 campaign, though recent back-to-back exits from the EFL Trophy and the FA Cup at least allows them to focus purely on preserving their place in League One.
In addition to improving their attacking threat by being more direct in and around the opposition area, McSheffrey has stated his twin aims to increase Donny’s fitness and work-rate, so will hope to see some results in that regard on Saturday.
Fleetwood, meanwhile, arrive in South Yorkshire sitting just four places above their hosts in the table, and could be hauled within three points of Doncaster if they fall to another defeat.
Having lost seven of eight games in all competitions from the start of November, culminating in a 5-1 thrashing by Accrington Stanley, the Lancashire outfit had demonstrated great character to post two wins and as many clean sheets from their three league matches before the Boxing Day visit of Shrewsbury.
Despite holding their visitors to 0-0 until the interval, Fleetwood then proceeded to leak three unanswered goals in the second half, and have since been sidelined by the latest wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.