Dunfermline Athletic

Josh Edwards is a Par

Tuesday, 16th Jul 2019

“It’s nice to have a manager who believes in me, wanted to bring me into the club and I just want to push on again.

Even with the signing today of Josh Edwards from Airdrieonians, Stevie Crawford says that there is still room for another wide player in his squad:-

”I have been on record saying that we are trying to sign a wide player. That is a position that Josh (Edwards) can play.

”What we have managed to do is balance the squad a little bit, it is something that I hadn`t foreseen in terms of the availability of Josh but he came to our attention and so now gives us a balance should anything happen to Lewis Martin or even if Josh finds a bit of form and Lewis’ dips we have a natural left back.

”I know Euan Murray had said on record that he can also play there, which he can, but in the main we will be looking to use Euan at centre back. Within the budget we still have got an opportunity to bring in that wide player to try and play that attacking role going forward.

”With Callum Smith going out in loan, that has allowed us to make adjustments and bringing in, which we think gives us a better balance.”

Josh Edwards on signing for Dunfermline
Wed, 17th Jul 2019

Josh is left footed and having lost a natural left footed player in Jackson Longridge in the summer to Bradford City, the signing brings competition now for Lewis Martin at left back.

Stevie acknowledged Lewis has done really well considering that he has been out for most of last season injured.

”He was excellent at the weekend but there are games where we possibly need a left footer to get crosses in. It is not to say that Lewis Martin can`t do that, he continues to work on his left foot and not be afraid to just throw in crosses. It gives us competition for places now at left back.”

After signing for Dunfermline on Tuesday, Josh Edwards told the media:-

”I want to play games and keep learning. If I had stayed at Airdrie, it wouldn’t have been a major problem for me. I would have kept working hard, learning from the experienced players there and trying to improve.

”There was a little bit of interest in me in January but nothing really came of it. But this season there have been a lot of new faces in at Airdrie - quite a few left-sided players. I had a decent time last year, played quite a few games so I was just glad when Dunfermline came looking for me and it went through.”

Every player wants to play at the highest level possible so with the opportunity to move from League One to play in the Championship it was a hard move to turn down.

”I’ve learned so much in the last couple of years at Airdrie. It’s so different from playing under-17s football or boys’ club level. All the boys are so physical and you’ve got to have something about you to compete a that level and make your mark on games.

“Marc Fitzpatrick was someone who set the standard for me in training at the start. If you weren’t meeting that standard, then he was on your case straight away. Sean Crichton was a major part in my development and someone like Dale Carrick, who played at a great level with Hearts, was really good to speak to about football and my development.”

Josh started playing in boys’ club football then went to Kilmarnock at under-14, left there after a year and then went to Ayr United for six months. He took up the story:-

“I got released by Kilmarnock and never really had anything signed with Ayr before they let me go. I’ve taken a few knocks and there have been a few managers who maybe didn’t like me - especially at Killie. They didn’t really take to me and I got released from there.”

From there Josh returned to boys’ club football at Crosshouse Boys’ Club right up until his 17th birthday when he signed for Airdrie.

“It’s nice to have a manager who believes in me, wanted to bring me into the club and I just want to push on again.

“I think those challenges have made me more determined to kick on and have a good career.

“There were some stages of last season when I was thinking ‘maybe this isn’t want I’m meant to do’, but towards the end of the season I had a good wee run in the team - and Airdrie went full-time this year, so I thought ‘I’ll get my head down and try to push on’. “

Josh played briefly with Andy Ryan when he first joined Airdrie.

“He left for Dunfermline after about a month of me being at Airdrie. I didn’t really get to know him but I played a couple of pre-season friendlies with him. I know he’s deadly in front of goal - that’s all!”

Good recommendations about the club were made by former Pars players now on the books at Airdrieonians - Callum Fordyce, David Hutton and Nat Wedderburn. Josh claimed that had
been really important.

“They were all speaking to me and told me how much they enjoyed their time at Dunfermline and what a great club it is. That just made my decision even easier.”

Josh caught the end of the team meeting on Tuesday morning and witnessed Greg Shields going through Sunday’s game. Josh added:-

“The boys did really well at the weekend. There were so many positives to look back on. We looked really sharp in the first game so hopefully we can kick on and win the group.”

While hopefully to be given a chance to show what he can do, Josh is another hungry young player that appears to fit the profile being built at East End Park and the gaffer admitted that was one of the attractions when it came to his interest in him.

“He is nineteen years of age, he has a wealth of experience already in League One. Airdrie had signed Adam Eckersley as well so I think we are the right fit for Josh to see interest from a club like ourselves. It was the right step for his career at this moment in time and we are delighted to have him on board.”

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