ON THE RIGHT ROAD

An­drew Shin­nie says car-shar­ing is help­ing Lu­ton’s pro­mo­tion push

The Football League Paper - - INSIDE: - By Ross Law­son

FIVE team-mates, one peo­ple car­rier and a rush-hour jour­ney to train­ing might not scream ‘glamor’ in the world of a foot­baller – but Lu­ton’s An­drew Shin­nie would beg to dif­fer.

To de­scribe the past two years as tur­bu­lent would be an un­der­state­ment for the Birm­ing­ham loa­nee, who has spent far more time away from St An­drew’s.

So it’s lit­tle won­der that the mid­fielder’s home and heart are high on the agenda of where he spends his time – im­por­tantly off the pitch as well as on it.

And, with cap­tain Scott Cuth­bert, broth­ers Olly and El­liot Lee and Dan Potts join­ing him on the morn­ing pil­grim­age to Ke­nil­worth Road from Es­sex, Shin­nie is do­ing his up­most to be­come part of the fur­ni­ture.

“It’s great that we’ve got it – it’s good of the club that we can all fit in and have a good laugh to­gether,” he said.

“We can have a good joke in the morn­ing. We’re all good friends and there’s a lot of team spirit and bond­ing, so I re­ally en­joy that part of it.

So­cial­is­ing

“We stop off and have a cof­fee, en­joy each other’s com­pany, and that’s some­thing I re­ally look for­ward to.

“Some peo­ple en­joy trav­el­ling in on their own, train­ing and then go­ing home, but the so­cial­is­ing is im­por­tant to me, hav­ing the ban­ter around.

“My mis­sus, Aimee, is re­ally good friends with Olly’s mis­sus. She’s got friends in Es­sex and it made sense to move there to be able to set­tle in and make things eas­ier.”

With his Birm­ing­ham con­tract com­ing to an end next year, a con­clu­sion one way or the other looks likely for the 28-year-old, who is at Lu­ton on loan un­til next sum­mer, with a per­ma­nent deal a pos­si­bil­ity.

A step-down to League Two it might have been for Shin­nie, but with the Hat­ters cur­rently third and a favourite for pro­mo­tion, the for­mer Scot­tish in­ter­na­tional sees things far from that way.

With Nathan Jones at the helm, the chance of Shin­nie’s head be­ing turned was not a sur­prise.

The mid­fielder was one of Jones’ tar­gets when as­sis­tant man­ager at Brighton and is one of five play­ers signed – ei­ther per­ma­nently or on loan – from Premier League or Cham­pi­onships clubs last sum­mer.

Shin­nie added: “The am­bi­tion played a part. The club are in League Two but in the years to come will get up the leagues. It’s got good back­ing, good fans and an am­bi­tious man­ager and own­ers.

Sac­ri­fices

“Ev­ery­thing just seemed right at the time and it ex­cited me. The man­ager pre­sented to me where I’d be play­ing and it all looked to make sense.

“If you’re set­tled, then you play your best foot­ball. It’s mas­sive for me.

“It’s been a bit tough. My part­ner and I are away from fam­ily and it has been a while. It is dif­fi­cult at times, but those are the sac­ri­fices you make to play foot­ball.”

On Tues­day, Shin­nie re­turned from in­jury against AFC Wimbledon in the Check­a­trade Tro­phy, scor­ing his first two goals for the club to help the Hat­ters top their pool in his first start for a month.

But, with those his first strikes since notch­ing for Hiber­nian in Fe­bru­ary, the at­tack-minded player is far from con­tent to stop there.

“It’s a part of my game where I feel I should be do­ing bet­ter,” he added.

“I can fin­ish well and have that com­po­sure, so it is some­where I am look­ing to im­prove on.

“There was a good start to the sea­son, both per­son­ally and as a team, so in­jury does set you back but I needed time to get my an­kle bet­ter.”

PIC­TURE: PSI/Nigel Cole

READY TO GO: An­drew Shin­nie is glad to be back in ac­tion af­ter in­jury

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.