WIN­DASS OF CHANGE

Ac­cring­ton’s Josh wants to make his own name, not live off dad Dean’s

The Football League Paper - - INSIDE: - By Joshua Richards

IT TOOK Josh Win­dass a while to find his feet in League Two, but now that the goals have started flow­ing the 21-year-old’s next tar­get is to emerge from the shadow of dad Dean. Fol­low­ing his Ac­cring­ton de­but in Novem­ber 2013 – a 1-0 de­feat to Tran­mere in front of a mod­est 1,700-crowd

at the Crown Ground – Win­dass has grad­u­ally proved him­self and be­come a main­stay of the Stan­ley mid­field.

A change in manager with John Cole­man tak­ing the reins from James Beat­tie last Septem­ber saw Win­dass go through his own tran­si­tion from deep-ly­ing mid­fielder to a more ad­vanced role, kick­ing on to add goals to his game af­ter fail­ing to find the net in his first 36 ap­pear­ances as a se­nior player.

Re­luc­tant

A pur­ple patch of three goals in four games that be­gan at the end of last month has helped push Ac­cring­ton away from the rel­e­ga­tion zone.

But the chance to draw com­par­isons with dad Dean’s suc­cess­ful ca­reer, which in­cluded fir­ing home-town club Hull City into the Pre­mier League in the play-offs, is some­thing Win­dass ju­nior is re­luc­tant to en­ter­tain.

“Any time any­one talks about me, they men­tion I’m Dean’s son,” says the for­mer Hud­der­s­field trainee. “It is a bit an­noy­ing, be­cause what I’m do­ing is not re­ally any­thing to do with him.

“We have a good re­la­tion­ship and we talk about foot­ball, but we don’t talk about me specif­i­cally.

“I don’t ask him for ad­vice. If I did he would help me, but I’m my own man.”

Win­dass’s de­ter­mi­na­tion to fi­nally be recog­nised in his own right is per­haps borne out of a pe­riod of un­cer­tainty where in­juries left him won­der­ing whether he would make the grade.

By his own ad­mis­sion, as a teenager he never con­sid­ered an oc­cu­pa­tion other than be­com­ing a pro­fes­sional foot­baller.

“I would have strug­gled with any­thing else,” he points out.

Yet a fresh in­jury suf­fered while play­ing for Har­ro­gate Rail­way Ath­letic, so soon af­ter his bur­geon­ing ca­reer at Hud­der­s­field came to an end fol­low­ing a se­vere leg break, had him sweat­ing on his fu­ture.

“I broke my fibula, tibia and an­kle and had a year out,” said Win­dass. “I had a few tri­als af­ter that, but I was never fit to play.

Re­lief

“Then I went to Har­ro­gate and broke my wrist and I thought ‘I’m go­ing to have to get a job’, be­cause I couldn’t find a club.

“Then Paul Stephen­son at Hud­der­s­field took me along to Ac­cring­ton and James Beat­tie of­fered me a con­tract.

“It was a re­lief and Beatts was great to me. Now John Cole­man is, too.

“Ev­ery day he will tell me about po­si­tions to get into and I feel like I’m get­ting bet­ter and bet­ter.

“I hope I can keep scor­ing. I’m re­ally en­joy­ing my new role in the team. I feel like I’m in good form, and when you have play­ers around you also in form and a manager that be­lieves in you, then you have no ex­cuses.”

Win­dass helped his club se­cure a valu­able point at pro­mo­tion-chas­ing Wy­combe on Tues­day night.

It left Stan­ley 17th in the ta­ble with 45 points to their name. That gave them an eight-point cush­ion over the drop zone ahead of the week­end, while they were a hefty 12 points off the play-off spots.

“We want 50 points as soon as pos­si­ble and then we will see what we can do,” he added. “There’s no dan­ger of us tak­ing our eye off the ball.”

Derby’s run of poor form con­tin­ued on Fri­day night at Wolves – Page 23

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Images

RIS­ING HIGH: Josh Win­dass in ac­tion for Stan­ley against Leeds, while, inset, dad Dean cel­e­brates scor­ing the win­ner for Hull in the Cham­pi­onship play-off fi­nal against Bris­tol City in 2008

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