Tommo desperate to returnThursday, 14th Nov 2019
After being out for seven months Joe Thomson is working hard to press for a first team place
Pars midfielder Joe Thomson made the first team bench for Saturday’s Championship match against Alloa Athletic but nobody knew just how desperate he was to play. He has revealed this week:-
“I was dying to get on but in the second half I was bursting for the toilet and couldn’t go in case the gaffer wanted to put me on. I didn’t want to miss my chance, it never came but these things happen.
“The result wasn’t going the way we wanted. He put two strikers on because they can affect the game better. It was his decision, we just look forward to the next game against Stranraer and hopefully my first first team action will come there.
“It was good for him to put me in the squad and showing faith. Some boys missed out but I was so excited, hoping to get on. I guessed that I wouldn’t start since the boys have had a couple of good results.
“When you are the manager you are not going to put a midfielder on when you have two strikers sitting on the bench. I can understand the reasons behind it at the weekend.
“Obviously we weren’t winning but the seven people who were on the bench felt think that they could make the difference. If you don’t think you can make a difference there is no point in playing football.”
The 22-year-old, who joined the club in the summer of 2018 after leaving Celtic, has been out of action since tearing his anterior cruciate ligament against Ayr United in March. It has been a long way back, there has been a lot of recovery work but Joe claimed that his return is probably getting harder now.
“At the start it seemed a million miles away but the closer you get you want to get on the pitch and show people what you can do again. Show them that you are back and you can make the difference but you have got to be patient at the same time.
“I am still coming back from a long term injury but I feel really good, I feel really strong now and probably feel my legs in a stronger place than what I felt before the injury which I had heard people say. I feel really good in myself and with my fitness levels.
“I have been really surprised how well I have lasted in each of the games. I felt as if I could have kept going, even in the ones where I played the full ninety minutes. I feel that physically I am in a really good place.”
More gym work than players have time to do when in training has led to Joe feeling stronger than ever. He continued:-
“Different exercises build you up. Probably the knee and the part that I got operated on probably isn’t ever going to be as strong as it was before. They explained that it is the bits round about it that I need to get stronger than they were before.
“Things like that but I feel good, feel strong when I am running. My fitness levels have always been pretty good and I feel as they have come on a bit as well.”
In his first match back he played sixty minutes against Celtic reserves on 22nd October. Then he played 70 minutes in a bounce match against Civil Service Strollers the following week before playing the full ninety in the reserves against Dundee United and Kilmarnock.
“That was two games in less than a week on Astroturf and ninety minutes on both. I feel really good but we have good physios here as well who can sort you out if there were problems, I feel strong.
“Rugby Park was really good, there was a bit of rain as well which probably helped the surface and the way the ball moved. It was a big pitch and wouldn’t imagine the dimensions are too far off what the pitch out there is. Good to get another ninety minutes and a step in the right direction.
“I thought it was going to be just the three games maybe one ninety minutes but that was the case and I was able to get in the squad for Saturday. It was beneficial for myself to get another ninety minutes and I’m feeling strong again because of it.”
After three games surrounded by young players the Kilmarnock game saw a bit more experience around about him but Joe is not bother me who he is playing with, it is good to be back out on the pitch. He did however pay tribute to the young squad and their coach:-
“I think they are really lucky to have a coach like Shieldsie the way he takes them. Personally I think he is one of the best young coaches with his attention to detail and the way he wants to bring the young boys on. From when I came in here until now the difference in the young boys is incredible.
“Even when he comes up and takes first team training, his training is brilliant. I think as a club we are lucky to have somebody like that in charge of the youth. He is really good.
“Lewis McCann and Matty Todd are only eighteen years old themselves. The young boy Miller Fenton has been on the first team bench and he is only just sixteen.
“There are some good boys coming through and at a club like this you need good youngsters coming through where hopefully you can sell them on. That is the aim for a club like this to give them a chance to go on to the next level. I think that there are definitely a few who could do that because we do have some good young players.”
Joe Thomson’s aim all along has been to get back into the first team and he is optimistic that he might make that return in the Scottish Cup at a venue which will be new to him:-
“I have never been to Stranraer but the weather is not going to be great and as we come into winter i don’t think the pitch is going to be brilliant.
“I just know that anytime when I was on loan at Dumbarton and played bigger teams you don’t really need psyched up for the game. We saw it with Raith Rovers last year, they want to beat the team that is in a league above them.
“We have everything to lose and they go into the game probably expected not to win because they are the lower league game.
“I think we are going to go down early and get some pre match. We are doing all the right things to help us so that there are no excuses and we will obviously be going down there to win the game.”
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