McDonald's appetiser a tasty hint of things to come
PUBLISHED: 07:00 14 March 2009 | UPDATED: 16:07 10 September 2010
Bryan Gunn could be forgiven for giving himself a pat on the back this week as his recruitment policy finally came good. Cody McDonald's introduction to first team football at Norwich was a stunning one - a goal within minutes of coming on as a late sub which clinched three points against Cardiff on Tuesday.
Bryan Gunn could be forgiven for giving himself a pat on the back this week as his recruitment policy finally came good.
Cody McDonald's introduction to first team football at Norwich was a stunning one - a goal within minutes of coming on as a late sub which clinched three points against Cardiff on Tuesday.
That, plus a goal on his full debut for on-loan David Mooney, THAT performance by Alan Gow and Adrian Leijer's almost forgotten but highly accomplished second-half display as a half-time replacement for Jason Shackell endorsed Gun's decision to bring them to Carrow Road.
McDonald is the only one signed on a permanent deal, having joined from Rymans Premier League outfit Dartford - but he's proving full value. He scored on his first outing, a reserve team friendly against Great Yarmouth; he scored against Cardiff - and he scored in a behind-closed-doors 4-3 defeat against a Chelsea XI the following day.
Gunn believes there are rich pickings to be had in non-league football - although the agents are clearly there already.
"It's something that (chief scout) John Deehan and I chat about," he said. "You get recommended players all the time from different avenues, whether it be from your own scouts or whether it be from agents.
"In this day and age now even non-league players have agents because I suppose their agents know there are a few diamonds out there and it's a good opportunity for them to build up their client list as well.
"We have obviously been very fortunate with our raid on the Ryman Premier.
"Cody is a breath of fresh air with his attitude to come to work because he knows what it's like to work, really work, so that sort of attitude is very refreshing.
"To have somebody like him in the squad is good and hopefully the other players realise that he has had a different journey to professional football than some of them."
Mooney was making his full Championship debut and did what it said on the box - no surprise to Gunn.
"Was I surprised? I saw him play the Wednesday before and he put in an excellent performance - so no," said Gunn.
"He's a confident lad. I said at the time he would bring goals to the table, his appetite for the game as well - he has got that cheeky Irish swagger about him.
"I watched him in the reserve game, he didn't give up on anything and then the other evening he certainly didn't give up on anything and it was only down to the fitness side of things that we had to take him off.
"But I'm sure he would have wanted to stay on that pitch for as long as possible."