Reporter: Simon Smedley
Date online: 05 September 2013
DEBUT hero Danny Philliskirk is hoping that his two-goal salvo in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy victory at Shrewsbury has thrust him into manager Lee Johnson’s plans ahead of Monday’s televised clash at Preston.
Philliskirk (22), son of Athletic’s Academy boss Tony, was handed his first start for his home-town club at Greenhous Meadow after signing a two-year Boundary Park contract — and promptly pounced to score his two goals inside the opening half-hour.
Athletic went on to cruise to a 4-1 win, with Philliskirk playing his major role before being replaced late on in the match.
Preparations are now well under way for Monday’s Sky Bet League One match at Deepdale, and though there is plenty of competition for forward places in Athletic’s team at present, Philliskirk would love to be involved.
He said: “I was buzzing on Tuesday night. Two goals on my debut was great.
“For the team to win 4-1 away, too, that’s a terrific result whoever you’re playing against.
“Scoring early doors helped settle me down, and right now I’m feeling good. I’m feeling fit and strong, and the lads have really helped me. I feel as though I fit in already.
“I just want to work hard and do the best I can now I’ve been given this chance.
“We’ve got a great squad, as was proved on Tuesday. The lads that came in as well as myself all did well, so we know we’ve got people who can come into any position and do a job.
“Hopefully I’ve thrown my name into the ring for Monday.
“All I can do is score goals — that’s my job.
“I can hold up the ball, too, and bring others into play, but as far as Monday goes, we’ll just have to see what happens.
“I’ll keep working hard and keep my head down, and whatever the manager decides to do, he knows I’ll be ready.
“It’s a big TV game on Monday so it would be great to be involved, but whoever goes into the game will be full of confidence, and hopefully we’ll have enough to go there and bring back the three points.”
After beginning his career as an eight-year-old with Athletic, Philliskirk secured a move to London giants Chelsea in 2007 after a six-figure transfer fee was agreed.
He was at Stamford Bridge for four years, and though he made it into England’s under-17s side, he couldn’t force himself into the Blues’ first-team reckoning.
After making his Football League debut for Oxford United while on loan from Chelsea, Philliskirk then moved to Sheffield United in the summer of 2011, then subsequently to Coventry City, whom he left at the end of last season.
A trial at Doncaster this summer didn’t work out, so he was snapped up by Athletic boss Johnson.
His clinically-taken goals at Shrewsbury were his first in professional football.
Have Your Say