Penalty fluff will not halt goal rush

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP PREVIEW - By Jack McCluskey

CRAIG Bryson’s penalty miss against Birm­ing­ham may have landed him in a spot of bother but the Derby mid­fielder says he’s happy with his goal tally this sea­son.

Had his St An­drew’s spot-kick gone in last week­end it would have taken him to 13 this term – un­luck­ily for the Scot­land in­ter­na­tional it cul­mi­nated in two valu­able points dropped for the Rams as the Blues bat­tled back for a 3-3 draw.

And with pro­mo­tion ri­vals QPR head­ing to Pride Park on Mon­day night, the 27year-old Bryson re­veals he’s been taken off penalty du­ties for the fore­see­able fu­ture.

“Af­ter that game I think it is fair to say I’m off penal­ties, the way I hit the penalty was re­ally dis­ap­point­ing,” he said.

“I had been tak­ing loads in train­ing and smash­ing them all in but when it came to the game I ob­vi­ously just didn’t hit it well enough.”


Bryson had al­ready come in for some stick from team­mates af­ter his pur­ple patch in front of goal dried up in Jan­uary.

That was be­fore a cru­cial strike against Yeovil at the end of last month helped earn a 3-2 win – and he’s hop­ing to kick on.

“I am de­lighted with how many I have scored this sea­son and with 17 games to go I just want to try and score as many as I can,” added Bryson, who has al­ready smashed his pre-sea­son tar­get of ten goals this sea­son.

“Be­fore my goal against Yeovil the goals seemed to dry up but I didn’t let it bother me too much, some of the play­ers were giv­ing me a bit of stick.

“I haven’t set my­self any new tar­gets but now I’m quite con­fi­dent that I can score in ev­ery game that I go into.

“I think as a team we can win ev­ery game but ob­vi­ously in the Cham­pi­onship it is not go­ing to be plain sail­ing.

“When you are play­ing teams around you in the league the main thing is to not let them beat you and al­low them to open up a gap.

“We know they (QPR) are a re­ally big out­fit and we will need to be at the top of our game to get some­thing out of it.

“It is a big game for both teams and I would think that both teams will be try­ing to go for the win and take all three points.

“The staff and play­ers have con­fi­dence from our per­for­mances and we be­lieve we can win ev­ery game, so the QPR game will be no dif­fer­ent.”

Derby have no fresh in­jury con­cerns go­ing into the game and boss Steve McClaren is set to name an un­changed side.

But for­mer Kil­marnock en­forcer Bryson has is­sued a warn­ing af­ter see­ing Fed­erico Macheda earn a last-minute lev­eller last time out.

“When we take the lead we need to be a bit more street wise and see games out more ruth­lessly,” he con­tin­ued.“We are dis­ap­pointed be­cause we should have seen the game out but then again it is an­other point gained lead­ing up to the game on Mon­day.

“Teams are now see­ing us as a scalp and are con­stantly try­ing to get points off us but against Birm­ing­ham it was more down to our own down­fall.”

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Im­ages

PASS THE BA­TON: Craig Bryson has re­vealed he’s been taken off penalty du­ties fol­low­ing his miss at Birm­ing­ham last week

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