Dunfermline Athletic

Smith fizzes Irn Bru victory

Wednesday, 15th Aug 2018

“I did not think that I was going to get there but did. It was worth it in the end.”

The Pars 18 year old striker Callum Smith scored the winning goal in the Irn Bru Cup tie on Tuesday night. He was delighted to get on the scoresheet and to record a victory at Inverness with such a young team. Speaking exclusively to this website Callum said:-

“I am hoping that this will be our team for the Irn Bru Cup this season. The young boys love playing in games like this, it gets us experience for when we get our chance in the first team. These are the games that we should be playing in.

“The manager said that he was going to change the team, so we knew that it was our chance. I am trying to be back into the first team so I knew that I had to score a goal. I did that and hopefully that helps my case.”

The opening goal came from the penalty spot after just 24 minutes of the first half. Kallum Higginbotham grasped the opportunity and dispatched the spot kick. The penalty decision by referee Alan Muir was not popular with the home fans and was even a bit of a surprise to the Fifers. Callum revealed:-

“I thought that the tackle was outside the box and personally I was shocked when I saw the penalty given. But we will take any goal we can get. I knew Higgy would score, he works on them everyday in training, and as soon as he stepped up he was going to score.”

The visitors duly went in at half time 1-0 ahead and Callum confirmed the managers’ half time instruction was just to keep doing what they were doing because they were playing well:-

“I would say that we were probably the better team in the first half. We went out in the second half and did the same again.”

Inverness Caley Thistle became more of a threat with two tactical substitutions just ten minutes into the second half and Callum was disappointed that the Pars lost their lead to a glancing header from former Pars youth Jordan White in 61 minutes. He added:-

“It was always going to be hard because Inverness have loads of experienced players. They are all bigger than us so we knew that we would have to defend well at setpieces.

“Cammy Gill was brilliant again, every time he plays he is brilliant and every day in training he is top class.”

While Inverness were kept at bay there was always hope that the Fifers could grab a late winner and that is just what happened. Callum’s 87th minute goal ended up being the winner.

“I lost my man on the half way line, sprinted all the way in. I did not think that I was going to get there but did. It was worth it in the end.

“Andy Ryan helped me a lot throughput the game, especially with his great delivery into the box. I knew what he was going to do and that is why I ran that far to get to it. He put a good ball in for me and it was a brilliant result.”

Five Dunfermlne young players made their starting debuts at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium but it is a year since Callum broke into the team against Hearts.

He made his first competitive start aged 17, at Tynecastle in the Betfred Cup and was credited with an assist on Declan McManus`s goal that put the Pars 2-1 ahead.

His first team appearances earned him a call up to the Scotland Under 19 squad to play an international tournament in Serbia in September 2017. Callum was rewarded with a new deal that contracted him at Dunfermline until 31 May 2020. He recalled that starting debut against Hearts and hopes that he can feature in this year’s Betfred Cup against them on Saturday:-

“It was a great game last season at Tynecastle, I would love to play against them again. I hope that I have made a mark. I went to Inverness saying to myself that I was going to try and get a goal, I did so I am happy with my performance.”

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