Dunfermline Athletic

Joe Chalmers contract extended

Friday, 3rd Feb 2023

JM:- “The way that he has turned around from last season, he has been really important in changing the mindset of the football club.

This week Dunfermline Athletic were pleased to announce that midfielder Joe Chalmers has signed a two year long extension to his contract with the club.

Manager James McPake explained that regardless of a clause in his contract that kicked in after a certain number of first team games, that had nothing to do with the extension.

“He has been a really good player for us. He is good about the place and I’m delighted that he is going to be here. In most games he covers the most ground. He takes instructions really well and is helpful to have on the pitch particularly when you are changing tactics. In terms of his footballing brain and the way he conducts himself, he has been excellent and somebody who is really good to work with.”

Joe is 29 years of age and has a vast experience having made 257 senior appearances now at seven clubs including playing in the Premierleague and the Championship. The manager praised Joe’s attitude to both training and playing, his effect on his team mates and his ability to adapt to different roles:-

“He is one of those leaders by example where he just conducts himself properly. He runs as much as he can, he takes care of the ball, he does everything that you ask of him and he is very tactically astute as well.

“It is a young squad that we have got, so having someone with his experience in it definitely helps. The way that he has turned around from last season, he has been really important in changing the mindset of the football club. Above all else he is a really good guy but he is a really good footballer as well.”

James believes that Joe is enjoying the fact that he has become such a key figure and being one of the senior ones, the gaffer revealed that he speaks to him a lot on and off the training pitch.

“He has just got a right good way about him. As I say, he does lead by example and that is not to say that the other senior ones don’t. He has that quiet nice guy look about him but he has that side to him where he demands standards but he does it in the right way. He has been really important to myself and Dave (Mackay) since we came in the door. We are delighted that he is going to be here and it is a good signing for us.”

On talking about signing his one year extension Joe Chalmers praised the team spirit and the feeling of togetherness that exists within the squad at Dunfermline. Joe is not alone in mentioning that with virtually every player consistently mentioning that in media interviews this season. James could only reply:-

“I just hope that they mean it! I think the players deserve a lot of the credit for that, if not all of it, because they come in every day, they work extremely hard. On the back of what we class as three really disappointing results - we lost on penalties, we lost to Dundee and then we drew at Clyde. They still came in the next day and they were bubbly. You have to give them the freedom to be like that.

“You have got to be consistent with your behaviours when you win or you don’t. Of course there is a time when you need to be serious and you need to work hard but there is never an issue with that with them. They might tell you differently but there has not been one day when we have questioned their attitude towards training or any game.”

The manager stressed that his formula started in the pre season friendlies against Cove Rangers, Forfar Athletic and Kilmarnock:-

“It was different, we were new to the club, the players were new to us and we were new to the players. We had to go in and put our points across from the very start. That is why we took the friendlies very seriously.

“It is something that I would do again actually after seeing it. It gets you going when you step away from that cliche of just using it as a fitness exercise. When you have a group of players, it is never as simple as that. It is a fitness exercise but right away they know that they are playing for places and a start in the first cup or league game.

“The team spirit has been built from that. They deserve a lot of that and it is great coming in, and I say this in the hope that it doesn’t happen too often, after a defeat. That was Montrose the last time or after three not great results for us in a week, they still came in and that spirit, that bubbliness, is still there. They are working as hard as ever, that is important and I’m glad that they are saying that!”

Reaction from Joe Chalmers to follow

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