Date: 12th February 2007 at 11:12am
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Barry Nicholson spoke of his envy at seeing so many of his club mates away on Scotland duty through the week and hopes his recent good performances will have been noticed by the new boss Alex McLeish. As expected, Big Alex showed that he has every belief in players from the north east by taking in Saturday`s Dunfermline match but it`s more likely he`d have been there to run his eye over Barry`s recently selected team mates than the ex-Pars player.

He won`t have done himself any harm in adding to his three already won caps however, as he scored a penalty to add to the five goals already claimed in the league, eight for the season in total. Sadly though this wasn`t a match of great passing moves, due mainly to the weather and Dunfermlines desperate league situation where every ball was a battle. Matches like that can often pass Barry by as standing at only 5`8″; he naturally prefers the ball on the deck.

He is playing possibly his most consistent football whilst having been at Aberdeen and remains hopeful; he`s still only 28, of a Scotland recall and spoke of that ambition.

‘There were a few of the players away with the Scotland squads and it is good to be playing in a team which is playing well and picking up victories.

‘I was a little bit disappointed not to be involved in the last squad. I desperately want to be involved again in the international set-up. I don’t think I have played as well up here as I have done in the past, but I will keep working hard in training and in games and, hopefully, the chance will come back.’

Barry then gave his views on the Euro places run-in and how he felt it would pan out for the Dons after his teams well deserved victory over his former employers: ‘It was vital we kept the pressure on”, he said

‘When the split comes after 33 games we want to be in contention so we can have a right good go in the last five games of the season against the top teams round about us and it is important we keep picking up results.’

Barry knew not to expect any favours from any of his previous team mates who lined up for Dunfermline against him and watched closely as Stevie Crawford briefed Dorus De Vries on Barry`s penalty technique as he stepped up.

He said: ‘Stevie Crawford knows I put my penalties to the right hand side and I think he had a word with his goalkeeper. He did go to the side I was going to go for, but he went early and I changed my mind at the last minute.

‘He knocked the ball off the penalty spot, obviously to try to put me off, but I kept my concentration and focused on putting the ball in the back of the net.

‘The conditions were not great for getting the ball down and playing, but it was vital we got the three points. It was a job well done and we are delighted to have scored three goals and kept a clean sheet.

‘The manager asked us at half-time to try to get the ball down and play, but it was so difficult. It was a swirling wind which seemed to change direction all the time and we had to grind out the result.

‘We deserved to win the game and it was an important result for us to keep us in the pack.’

‘We spoke before the game about how the conditions wouldn’t be great for getting the ball down and playing football.

But it was vitally important we picked up the three points to keep us in the pack. In the end, it was a case of job done.

With three goals and a clean sheet, I think it’s fair to say it was the right result.

We were definitely the better side overall.

We showed with a really good third goal what we’re capable of when we’re able to get the ball down.

We didn’t even know which way the wind was blowing half the time.

Sometimes we thought it was with us and then it was against us and basically the ball was swirling all over the place.

To grind out the result was the most important thing and we managed to do it in spite of the conditions.

I think the boys are pretty happy with our style of play but obviously conditions like that don’t allow you to demonstrate your best qualities.’



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