Dunfermline Athletic

Thomas toasts team spirit

Friday, 31st Jan 2020

“In football you never know what is round the corner so you need to keep pushing, impressing and who knows where that will take you?”

The Pars January loan signing from Kilmarnock, Dom Thomas should know the road to Dumfries very well since in two loan spells there from January 2017 and January 2018, he made 26 starts and five appearances off the bench for Queen of the South. He admitted:-

“It will be a bit different being on the opposition side this weekend. We will just go there with a game plan like we had on Friday night and if we carry the game plan out as well as we did on Friday night, I am sure that we will get the three points again.”

Both times it was Gary Naysmith who took Dom to Queens. Allan Johnston is now the manager but there are still a few players there who he played with

“I’m hoping they don’t fancy giving me a wee kick down there on Saturday!”

One player who Dom is still in contact with is Stephen Dobbie since he always found the Queens talisman good to chat to and someone to learn from:-

“He’s a wonderful player and has proven that over the years, scoring goals, creating goals and he really is a joy to watch sometimes. I’ll just be hoping he has an off-day on Saturday.

“He was great, on and off the pitch, for the full team. He has a wealth of experience in football and was always great with the lads coming through. I was a younger player when I went to Queens on loan and he was brilliant with me. I learned so much from him, whether in training or on match days.”

A win over Queen of the South would open up a six point gap between the Pars and their opponents who have two games in hand. Dom discussed the Championship contest:-

“It’s a hugely tight league and that win last week took us just a point behind Dundee, who are in that playoff position where we want to be. That’s our incentive going forward. We are looking at this playoff spots and getting as high as we can.

“Before I came here there was a bad run of results, I think five defeats on the bounce, but the players all wanted to put that right and I think we did that convincingly against Dundee - and that’s the standards set for the rest of the season now. We want to raise the bar every week and get better and better.”

As Dom arrived in Fife on loan from Kilmarnock, Greg Kiltie travelled in the opposite direction. Dom would be happy to do as well as Greg who was a fans favourite at East End Park, he commented:-

“Greg’s a great player. I didn’t see too much of him when he was at Dunfermline but at Kilmarnock he was superb, had a great attitude and when he was given a chance I felt he did well. Hopefully he goes back to Killie and gets his chance - because I’m sure he’ll take it.

“I think I’m a different player from Kiltie, so I’ll just come here and play my own game. But as far as I’m aware he did well here so, in that regard, I’ll try do match that or do even better.

“I’ve got 18 months left on my contract at Kilmarnock, I just signed a new deal last summer, so I’ve got some time left. But the important thing was to get out, play some games and impress. In football you never know what is round the corner so you need to keep pushing, impressing and who knows where that will take you?”

Greg Kiltie’s success was partially built on combining with a striker Kevin Nisbet. The Pars top goalscorer is an old acquaintance since he was the year above Dom at Trinity High School in Rutherglen.

“I’ve known Kevin for a number of years, I know his quality and how he plays. I think we’ve showed in both games we’ve played that we can link up and create chances and Kev can get on the end of them and add to him impressive goal tally.

“I was actually in his big brother’s class so I’ve known the family for a long time. That’s just football for you, meeting people along the way then you end up bumping into them further down the line.

“I always thought he was a great player and always rated him highly. It’s good to see him at the top of his game and doing well for Dunfermline and doing well for himself.

“You want your best players in the team and you want them scoring goals. They are hard to come by, so when you have a striker scoring freely, you want to keep them.

“I definitely think Kevin can go and play at a very high level. I hope he does because he deserves that. He has worked hard, gone down the league and came back up, and you can’t argue with his goal scoring record. He deserves a big move and, when the time is right, he’ll get one.”

Dom Thomas is happy to have settled in really quickly at Dunfermline and praised the great group of boys in the dressing room.

“I think getting that win always helps with the team spirit. The training’s been good, the boys have been superb and the manager and coaching staff have been great with me. I’m just looking forward to the rest of the season now.

“It’s always a bonus when you feel at home straight way, and that’s down to the dressing room we have here. It’s a good mix of young boys and experienced players and, again, just getting that win brings everyone together. It brings the whole club together, the players, the fans, the staff. We want to do that every week and hopefully climb the table into the playoffs.”

Dom will continue to run his own soccer school based in the South Lanarkshire Lifestyles Centre which is next to Trinity High School.

“That was the school I went to so it will be good to get back there as a coach and help the kids out. It is something a little different and something I’ve really enjoyed doing. It is growing and probably bigger than I ever expected. It’s good to have that on the side as well as my own football.”



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