Dunfermline Athletic

Fear no one

Friday, 16th Dec 2022

“It felt really good, it was a long time coming obviously. I have not scored anything near as much as I would like to but it was a really good team goal.”

On the Friday evening of Dunfermline’s SPFL Trust Trophy tie at Arbroath, when the opening goalscorer’s name popped up on Kyle Macdonald’s friends phones they were questioning the accuracy of the information. Kyle became the thirteenth different Dunfermline player to hit the net this season but it silenced his pals who had been ribbing him about his net zero record this season. The 22 year old told this website:-

“It felt really good, it was a long time coming obviously. I have not scored anything near as much as I would like to but it was a really good team goal.”

Admitting that it had been a really good feeling, he was grateful to Matty Todd for the cross that led to his sixth minute goal:-

“I spoke to Matty after the game and he just tried to play it across the goal. I don’t even know if he had seen me or not. I saw the space and just went for it. It was a good ball across and I managed to stick it in the net. Nikolay wasn’t close enough to the ball to get there - if he’d been close enough he would have toe poked it away from me!”

Being in the right position at the right time clearly boosted Kyle’s ability to crash the ball past former Pars goalkeeper Cammy Gill. He was able to reciprocate the favour thirty minutes later when he was credited with the assist for Matty’s second goal of the night that increased the lead to 4-0.

“I managed to set up Matty for one of his goals and pay him back for the one he set up for me. That’s me credited for a decent amount of assists this season so I am happy with that as well.”

The Pars first half performance was widely acclaimed amongst their best of the season and Kyle continued:-

“We were very good, just the way we moved the ball about and it felt that we were going to score with every attack. We were really dangerous going forward, when we had to defend, we defended well. It just seemed like we caused Arbroath lots of problems and they struggled to deal with it.

“That was playing against a team that’s in a league above us. If we can do that to a team that’s in the league above us then if we can take that into our league, there is not much that can get in our way this season.”

Kyle has played in all but five of Dunfermline’s 24 matches this season but has only played the full 90 minutes five times. He would really like to find a regular starting place / role in James McPake’s side.

“It has been like that since I moved to Dunfermline. I have been in and out the team, in the team, out the team - it has been difficult. There have been points when I have not been happy that I have not been playing and points when I have been really happy with the way I have been playing and doing well. It has been tough but all I can do is - every time that I get on the pitch - do the best that I can. I have been doing that at every opportunity.

“It is not anywhere near as much as I want to be playing but it is a team game and I am ready whenever I am called upon. I just want to play and do well for Dunfermline. I felt I did that last week and hopefully I have done enough to keep me in the team for a long spell. It has been difficult for me to make back to back performances. Hopefully I can do that now.”

One of the games that Kyle has played the full 90 in was against this weekend’s opponents, Airdrieonians, when they visited East End Park in August. In that match he also had attempts at goal while playing in a wide right position. He continued:-

“I definitely do feel that is probably my best position that I’ve found for Dunfermline so far - playing that right wingback role - having the full pitch to just run up and down, put crosses in, get forward and get back as well. That has been my best position for Dunfermline and that’s where my best performances have come from as well.

“I really enjoy taking people on, putting good crosses into the box and try to get on the scoresheet as well. I enjoy the position so hopefully, it depends upon what the team selection is, hopefully I can take that into Saturday. “

Kyle needs no reminding of Airdrieonians form since he clocked up 51 appearances for the Diamonds after progressing from the youth system at Motherwell and during a loan back there at the end of last season. He still follows Airdrieonians on his Twitter feed and has noted:-

“They had a bit of a slump but they have started picking up performances again recently. They got a good result against Falkirk the other week so they are a really good League One team. When we played them at East End at that point it was probably our toughest game. They are a good team and they have picked up their performance so being at home they will be relatively confident. I can’t see anything other than them wanting to win the game.

“We will be doing the exact same. We have lost only one league game this season so there is no reason we can’t take that performance from last week to Airdrie. There is nobody in this league that we should fear.”

Looking beyond League One Kyle is looking forward to facing Championship opposition in Dundee in the next round of the SPFL Trust Trophy. The tasty tie which means the return of James McPake and Dave Mackay to Dens has not been missed by the players:-

“That was the first thought that went through my head. Before the draw was made people were asking ‘who do you want to get’? I thought we’d get Dundee away just purely because it was the manager’s ex team. When you look at it, it’s probably the toughest draw that we could have got.

“If you want to go on and win the cup you have to play the best teams. If we can do well against Dundee then we have every chance of beating them. It is something to really look forward to because I have played in this tournament a couple of times and never really gone far or done much in it. It would be really nice to have a good cup run.”

Pars captain Kyle Benedictus lifted the trophy for Raith Rovers after last season’s final victory over Queen of the South at the Excelsior Stadium. Kyle remembers that well and it serves as an incentive:-

“I watched that and I want to play in cup finals so it is an opportunity for us. The manager has said a couple of times, this is a competition that a team like Dunfermline can really look at winning. Dunfermline should be looking to win a cup like this and it would be something that you can look back on at the end of your career having won something.

“Dundee will be a tough game, it is a good draw and you need to beat the best if you are looking to win it. There is nothing to be scared about.”

The quarter final match of the SPFL Trust Trophy will be televised live on BBC Alba on Tuesday 10th January, kick off 7.45pm.

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