Salute to Grounds
Reporter: Matthew Chambers
Date online: 01 March 2013
JONATHAN Grounds is the best left-back in League One on current form.
Caretaker manager Tony Philliskirk says has been impressed with the former Middlesbrough man since he took charge — despite a suspicion the 25 year old wasn’t living up to his potential at the turn of the year.
Recently, Grounds has added a highly-dangerous whipped-in corner kick to his armoury which has been responsible for two Matt Smith goals in the recent FA Cup ties against Everton.
His defensive work, too, has tightened. As a package, says Philliskirk, Grounds is capable of regular football at a higher level.
“When Paul Dickov brought me back working with the first team on Saturdays, I was quite critical of Jonathan in a game or two,” said Philliskirk, ahead of tomorrow’s Sheffield United test at Boundary Park.
“But since we have taken the games, I have not seen a better left-back in the league this year — on his current form.
“The big thing with Jonathan, and he is only young, is that he has to realise himself what a good player he is. “We say to a lot of players that you need a bit of luck to elevate you to the next level. But a lot of it comes from within. He is playing with a lot of confidence at the moment.”
Grounds is one of few players who has a deal running up to the end of next season.
WINGER Jordan Obita is set to extend his loan deal from Reading into a second month.
Obita’s parent club is happy for the 19 year old to remain at Boundary Park beyond his initial loan, due to expire after tomorrow’s game.
Obita said: "I'm really enjoying my football. The team is playing some fantastic stuff and we look like we're going for the play-offs rather than trying to stave off relegation. Hopefully over the next month we can get enough wins to propel us into mid-table."
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