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McKenna: Bakinson's the Profile of Player We Like
Friday, 21st Jan 2022 15:37

Town manager Kieran McKenna says new loan signing Tyreeq Bakinson is the profile of player the Blues like and want to add to their squad.

The 23-year-old midfielder joined from Bristol City for the rest of the season yesterday with Town having the option to make the move permanent in the summer.

“Really pleased to have him here,” McKenna said. “He’s the profile of player that we really like and we want to keep adding to the group.

“Somebody at a good age, he’s young, has played a good amount of games but is still young, has lots of room to develop.

“A hungry player, I think wants to play. Has come here knowing that we have ambitions as a club and he’s got ambitions with his career.

“Technically a good player, can take the ball and can play, and also physically a good athlete, can cover the pitch well and has good physical capabilities.

“He’s a profile that we like, an age that we like, a good personality and we’re happy to have him here.

“He’s very versatile, he’s played in different roles, especially different roles in midfield. He’s played as a six by himself, he’s played in a double pivot and he’s played higher up in a three.

“He gives us good options, versatile, we want to be flexible as a team, we want to be able to play in different ways with different balance in the team and he gives us more options on that.

“We’ll certainly be looking for ways that he, and all the other players of course, can be fitted in on the pitch, the best combinations for any given game and he gives us more options in that.”

Regarding the potential for the move to become permanent, the Northern Irishman added: “I think there is that option there, that’s something that we’re keen on as a club where possible.

“As I’ve said all along, we want to get the short term right and be as strong as we can for the rest of the season but we’ve also got an eye on the longer term, so we want players who come in here if possible to fit into that vision.

“Tyreeq’s one who has got that capability to do so. Obviously it’s up to him to go and show what he can do on the pitch and in training and obviously it’s got to be the right fit for us as well as a club.

“It’s nice to have him here for the rest of the season but also nice to have the option and capability that he could be a part of our plans going forward if it’s the right move.”

But McKenna says Town fans won’t get to see the former Luton youngster during this Saturday’s home game against Accrington.

“No, not likely this weekend,” he said. “He’s only just travelled up yesterday evening and only just met the players today for the first time.

“We’d like him to be able to watch the game tomorrow, get more familiar with the boys and his surroundings, get another couple of training sessions under his belt in the next few days and he’ll come into our plans after that.”

McKenna was asked whether the deal was one which was already in motion before he came to the club - with the likes of CEO Mark Ashton, director of performance Andy Rolls, director of football operations Gary Probert and others at Town all knowing Bakinson from their time working at Bristol City - and whether he is the one who gets the final say on a transfer.

“Yeah, absolutely, of course,” he insisted. “Anyone who comes into the building it’s going to be my final decision on it.

“It wasn’t that the wheels were in motion with the Tyreeq one, but obviously he is very well known to the club, to our recruitment team and to different people throughout the club. So, he was one that the club is well aware of.

“I’ve seen Tyreeq play before as well, but they were very much able to fill us in with some more detail about him as a player and as a person, obviously knowing him off the pitch.

“So, he’s someone who the club like, someone who the recruitment team like and has really good relationships with different people throughout the club, but also someone who I like and fits the profile that I spoke to the club about that we’d like to add more to the squad.

“He obviously became available in this window and, like I said, I think he strengthens the squad for the rest of the season, but also gives us the option to look at him as part of the club going forward into next season. So we think it works on a lot of different levels, and we’re happy to have it done.”

Asked about Robins manager Nigel Pearson’s comments regarding Bakinson at yesterday’s press conference, McKenna said: “Obviously, I can’t speak too much about what’s happened at Bristol City or what Nigel’s relationship was with Tyreeq. I can only go from what I know and the people I have spoken to.

“As I said, there are a lot of staff here that work with him, from not just when he was in the first team at Bristol City but when he was in the academy at Bristol City, and they speak very highly about him as a person.

“Good family, good upbringing, good boy, respectful, wants to work and wants to learn. So I’ve had enough good references to be very comfortable in that side of it and the person that we are bringing into the building.

“I’ve met him this morning and that only confirms that in terms of my impressions of him, so I can only speak on what the people I’ve spoken to directly and my impressions from meeting him. We’re very happy with the personality as well as the player that we have in the door.”

Quizzed on the research which goes into recruiting a player these days, McKenna said: “The video side of it has become more important in recruitment, there’s great access here and at all clubs to watch footage of players from around the world from whatever league that we want and see them in almost every game.

“That’s a big part of it. It’s something that is growing here as a club as well, the recruitment/analysis side of things from a video perspective.

“It’s also important to see players live, that’s always important because sometimes you get a slightly different feel from watching it live and there are things you can pick up that aren’t always so evident on the video.

“And then it’s also important to have good references and where possible find out about the player and his background, his parent, where he started playing football, what he’s about as a person.

“Obviously with Tyreeq we have quite a few staff in the building, who have worked with him and speak very highly of him as a kid and as person so that’s obviously a big help as well and gives us more assurances in terms of knowing what we’re getting in the door.

“It’s a big part of the game, making sure that we do the research right in terms of the recruitment. You can never be 100 per cent sure about anyone, but do as much background as you can and be as sure as you possible can be that it’ll be a good fit for the team and a good fit for the club and a good fit for the environment in general.”

Photo: ITFC

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BlueHope22 added 15:56 - Jan 21
Well I hope he fits in and plays well and we can sign him in the summer welcome Ty and best of luck.

Timefliesbyintheblue added 15:57 - Jan 21
I get to like our manager the more I hear him talk. As I have said before he will be a success in his career. We just have to make sure it is here. His knowledge of players, especially the younger ones is second to none and I trust this interview will put to rest the conspiracy theories that always abound on social media including TWTD that this was not a 'McKenna' signing.
Media today thrives on and exaggerates stories such as those coming from Nigel Pearson/Bristol regarding this young man. The game is littered with players who did not fit at a certain club(s) but thrived at another - let us hope that we have one here.
Am looking forward to the game tomorrow - Accrington will be a test and must be respected.

shefki86 added 15:58 - Jan 21
Can’t say much more than that despite the bad press yesterday about his character. McKenna is happy enough so I’ll take that. COYB

Suffolkboy added 16:04 - Jan 21
Looks like KM and Co have tried hard to ensure all bases are covered : and alongside plans for the future .
Of course TB migh5 surprise everyone and prove a failure - then the end of season can be a parting of ways .
Let’s all trust KM and his methods and thoroughness ; well done one and all .

KernewekBlue added 16:06 - Jan 21
One man's meat is another man's poison... or in this case, vice versa.

Pearson obviously didn't like the young chap as a character and questioned his motivation by saying he only wanted to play under his own terms... McKenna's been told otherwise by people in the know, who have worked with Bakinson previously, so he has it on good authority that Pearson's criticism of the player isn't quite black and white.

I'm eager to see him on the pitch in a Town shirt and see with my own eyes what he brings to the party... hopefully, he'll be a useful and flexible addition to bolster a decent squad, giving more options and ammunition to the manager.

Time will tell I suppose.

Good luck to him in his Town career and may he bring us an added dimension that helps to push us onwards and upwards.


Bazza8564 added 16:26 - Jan 21
“Good family, good upbringing, good boy, respectful, wants to work and wants to learn"

I like this comment in particular. I know the Arsenal former kit man and ladies coach Vic Akers very well and over the years ive spoken to him a lot about younger players coming through the ranks there. I was always interested to hear him speak about some of the younger lads he worked with and it always made a big impression on me when he spoke about he character, behavior and upbringing in a player, as if its the most important box to tick because he know they aren't going to be trouble.

Perhaps thats why In my opinion the Pearson comments are so strange.....

warwickblue added 16:34 - Jan 21
I think far too much is being made of Pearson's comments. Just look at Norwood, for example. One minute he's of totally the wrong character for a club like Ipswich, now he's back in the fold and knocking in a goal a game. It's football for goodness sake, not Blind Date.

blu_dru added 17:18 - Jan 21
Previous managers would have scoffed at some of these questions and given a load of bluff in response but this guy just honestly answers anything he is asked. I like it.

North_London_Blue added 22:23 - Jan 21
The Nigel Pearson that this is referring to?

The kid may be hit and miss and may not work out but Nigel Pearson is hardly a shining example

ArnieM added 08:21 - Jan 22
There seems to a nasty undercurrent emanating from Bristol City FC and their fans. To trash a young player so publicly, frankly, amounts to defamation of character!

Welcome Tyreeq …., you’re a Town player now , onwards and upwards eh 👍

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