Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

McGeouch Says He's Fully Primed for League One; I Aim to Be More Than a Bit-Part Man - McGeouch

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

McGeouch Says He's Fully Primed for League One; I Aim to Be More Than a Bit-Part Man - McGeouch

Article excerpt

Byline: STUART RAYNER Football writer stuart.rayner@reachplc.com

DYLAN McGeouch says he will be better prepared for the physicality of League One this season after kicking it off with a man-of-thematch performance.

The Scotland international was surprisingly chosen ahead of newly-appointed club captain Grant Leadbitter for the 1-1 draw with Oxford United - and more than justified it with a composed, high-quality display alongside debutant George Dobson.

Left out of the squad for last season's play-off final, McGeouch considered leaving in the summer, but triggered a 12-month contract extension.

The 26-year-old is keen to prove he can play League One football, and feels better equipped after his debut Wearside campaign.

"I think I'll be better prepared for the physicality of the league," he said when asked what he had learnt from 2018-19.

"A lot of teams have good athletes and just being at the grounds and experiencing the travelling and the expectations, the demands on your body of Saturday-Tuesday games and stuff like that will help.

"Back up the road in Scotland I'm used to Saturday-Saturday games and every few weeks there's a midweek game.

"The schedule we had last year, especially with international breaks and stuff, meant we had a build-up and we were playing Tuesday or Wednesday every week, so it was kind of getting used to that, and now we have to go again without taking your foot off the gas at times in training during the week.

"It was disappointing not going up, especially with it being the last kick of the ball, and a lot of the guys will use that as motivation to make sure that doesn't happen again.

Turn to Page 48 FROM BACK PAGE "I spoke to the manager in the summer and I had it in my head that I know if I can get a good run of games I can play down here. I was determined to do so.

"That was my motivation to come back and not be a bit-part player, make a claim to play regularly and get into the manager's thoughts. …

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