Edwards left but never left out

Josh Edwards marked a notable milestone, making his 150th appearance for the club in a league match against Queen’s Park. While his exact position might be a topic that’s up for debate, one thing is clear – Josh Edwards is an invaluable asset to the team, and his manager, James McPake, couldn’t be more appreciative.

The manager has shown immense faith in the 23 year old, having played him every minute of the first six league matches this season. Last season he started Josh in 43 of the Pars 45 matches, playing the full game in 39 of them. McPake’s words about his star player couldn’t be more glowing:-

“He is massively important. I don’t normally make these statements, but there is no better left-back in this league or close – even though he is not playing left-back. He is fantastic, and comparing left-backs who I have played with or coached and managed, Josh is up there.”

It’s not every day that a manager declares such high praise for a player, especially one whose position on the field seems to be a topic of intrigue. McPake stressed, “He is another one who is desperate to get better, and we are delighted that we signed him for an extra two years.” This commitment reflects the club’s belief in Edwards’ potential and talent.

But what exactly is Josh Edwards’ role on the field? James shed light on this ambiguity: “I say left midfield, Dave Mackay says left wing-back because he is the old-fashioned full back, while I’m maybe trying to be smart.” It’s clear that Josh defies traditional positional definitions. “Left wing-back but even when he is playing left-back, he plays like a left wing. When Ewan Otoo plays left centre-back at times, he is playing left wing, overlapping Josh at times.”

This versatility demonstrates Edwards’ adaptability and skill set. In today’s dynamic football landscape, players who can contribute both defensively and offensively are like gold dust. James further elaborates on Josh’s multifaceted abilities:-

“He is a complete athlete with his running power, and then defensively, he has really improved. In the top end of the pitch, he can play like a winger at times, that’s why we can play this system so effectively. When you have him on one side, Comrie, O’Halloran, or Ritchie-Hosler on the other, then you can afford to play with one of them on the sides because they can defend, attack, and go past people.”

Dunfermline’s success this season may be closely intertwined with Josh Edwards’ contributions. The young dynamo epitomises the spirit of the squad – a fearless, energetic, and versatile group of players who never give up.

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