McGoldrick: We Can Stay in Contention
Thursday, 21st Sep 2017 17:58
Striker David McGoldrick believes Town can maintain their impressive start to the new season and stay in contention for the remainder of the campaign.
McGoldrick, 29, has netted four times so far - two in the Championship, two in the Carabao Cup - as Mick McCarthy’s men have won five league games and banked 15 points from a possible 21, taking them to fifth place in the table ahead of Saturday’s trip to face leaders Leeds, who are only two points better off having played a game more.
“I don’t see why we can’t do it,” said the Republic of Ireland international. “From my point of view, every season we say the Championship is harder, but I don’t really think there is one team that stands out from the rest or that we are scared of.
“Middlesbrough have gone and spent big money but last season Newcastle wiped us away at their place and we didn’t have a sniff, although I’m not forgetting we beat them at Portman Road.
“Any team can beat any other in this league – look at the results last week when Burton beat Fulham and Millwall beat Leeds – and I can’t see why we shouldn’t be able to stay in contention.”
Although Town have progressed well in spite of a lengthy injury list, McGoldrick is encouraged by the fact that he is only one of four strikers competing for places in McCarthy’s starting line-up. He added: “I think we have a very strong four in me, Freddie [Sears], Joe Garner and Martyn Waghorn, probably as strong a four as we’ve ever had in my time here.
“Freddie got goals when he came into the team and he still has it in his locker. He does it in training every day.
“I know Freddie hasn’t got off the mark yet this season but it’s not a drought and you have to remember he’s not playing centre-forward every game.
“I hear the gaffer saying what he does for the team and the rest of the lads respect that as much as the gaffer does.
“He’s got the running stats every week and he works hard. He might need a goal, or should I say he deserves a goal. But don’t worry about Freddie, he’ll score goals.
“Garns, who I played with at Forest years ago, has shown what he’s all about and even when he hasn’t scored he’s been fantastic in what he does for the team. For my goal at the weekend it was him fighting the centre-half to get the touch on the ball.
“He’s a feisty character but he’s a northerner, isn’t he? He’s a lunatic, on and off the pitch, and I’ve got a lot of stories about him that I can’t tell you. He’s a good guy, good around the changing room and a great player to go to war with out there.”
McGoldrick has also been impressed with what he has seen so far of Manchester City loanee Bersant Celina, already a firm favourite with many Town fans.
He said: “Bersant is a good player, very technically gifted. This is his first experience of playing in England at first team level and I remember when we played against Peterborough in the pre-season friendly, afterwards he was saying it was so quick and frantic.
“It won’t be nicey-nicey football all the time and he’s got to get used to that. He’s learning with every game that he’s going to have to do the dirty work at this club. When he’s on the ball he can play and he can play on the wing, in a three-man midfield or up front.
“He got a great assist for me at Luton and when you’re as clever a footballer as he is you can play anywhere in the front line and be very effective.”
McGoldrick is also convinced that midfielder Cole Skuse, who netted only his second goal in 176 appearances to put Town on the road to a 2-0 home win over struggling Bolton last week, can find the net on a more regular basis.
He added: “Maybe Skusey should score more often with his quality. He’s a great striker of the ball and that’s what we need more of.
“He said it was going in the top corner but it was a good goal and I’m happy for him because I think he’s been good with his pressing and his work rate for the team that people don’t always see. He’s different class and the boys are buzzing that he got the goal.
“Technique-wise, he strikes it cleanly, left foot or right foot, and he’s one of the best passers in the team. I say it to his face – he should score more goals and hopefully he can add that to his game.
“But with the way we play he’s our main sitter so obviously it’s hard for him to get up there. He doesn’t come up for everything but we’re delighted that he got a goal at the weekend.”
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