The Press and Journal (Inverness, Highlands, and Islands)

Reynolds is ready to step up for Reds at any time

De­fender de­ter­mined to keep his place in start­ing line-up

- BY DANNY LAW

Aberdeen de­fender Mark Reynolds ad­mits he has been frus­trated by his lack of game time at Pit­to­drie this sea­son.

The 30-year-old made only his fourth Pre­mier­ship start of the sea­son in Satur­day’s 2-0 vic­tory against Kil­marnock.

Scott McKenna’s re­mark­able breakthrou­gh sea­son with the Reds has been the pri­mary rea­son why Reynolds has been re­stricted to a bit-part role, hav­ing been an ever-present for the ma­jor­ity of his time at the Dons since join­ing the club five years ago.

Af­ter re­turn­ing to the line-up last weekend, the for­mer Mother­well and Sh­effield Wed­nes­day de­fender is de­ter­mined to keep his place, start­ing with tonight’s meet­ing against Hearts at Pit­to­drie.

He said: “It’s frus­trat­ing when you’re not play­ing and just watch­ing from the side­lines when you want to get on and make an im­pact.

“That’s why it was good to get back in from the start, play 90 min­utes and help the team get a clean sheet.

“I’m just not used to the situation as the only time I’ve missed out in the past is when I’ve been injured.

“I’m train­ing well, feel­ing strong and fit. Not play­ing is hard but it is just one of the joys of foot­ball.

“The man­ager’s door is al­ways open and I have spo­ken to him but, ul­ti­mately,

“It’s frus­trat­ing when you’re just watch­ing from the side­lines”

he’s in charge and it’s hard to ar­gue with that when the boys are do­ing well.

“You just need to sit and bide your time – as I’ve al­ways said to the man­ager I won’t start shout­ing the odds. I’ll just get my head down and work hard in train­ing.

“I’ll make sure I’m ready if the chance comes along to start games. That’s what I did at Kil­marnock last week and I think I played all right, so we’ll see.”

Reynolds, how­ever, ac­cepts the form shown by McKenna has rightly made him a main­stay in the Aberdeen team.

The 21-year-old’s im­pres­sive cam­paign was re­warded with a place on the four-man short­list for the PFA Scot­land young player-of-the-year award.

Reynolds added: “I can have no ar­gu­ments as Scott came in af­ter we didn’t per­form well in a de­feat at Mother­well and he has taken his chance.

“He’s gone from strength to strength since, although there are games I feel I could have come in and done well.

“You can stamp your feet all you want and throw your toys out the pram but you just have to get on with it.

“We have re­ally strong com­pe­ti­tion for nearly ev­ery po­si­tion at Aberdeen.

“This is the first squad I’ve been in with such strength in depth as there are at least two play­ers in ev­ery po­si­tion who could play ev­ery week.”

 ??  ?? BID­ING HIS TIME: Mark Reynolds is fo­cus­ing on some more first-team ac­tion
BID­ING HIS TIME: Mark Reynolds is fo­cus­ing on some more first-team ac­tion
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