Hot-Shot Akinbiyi Tipped by Ward as the Man to Out-Shoot Stan

By Hill, Graham | Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England), August 13, 2000 | Go to article overview

Hot-Shot Akinbiyi Tipped by Ward as the Man to Out-Shoot Stan


Hill, Graham, Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)


ADE Akinbiyi has been tipped to pip Stan Collymore in the goalscoring stakes this season... by the man who has tracked his progress for the last two seasons.

Wolves No.2 John Ward believes that Akinbiyi will not only be a success at Filbert Street, but could be attracting the attention of bigger clubs in years to come.

Akinbiyi, 25, is set to make his debut for Leicester against Aston Villa next Saturday when the Premiership gets under way.

But while all eyes will be on Collymore against his old club, Ward reckons Akinbiyi could steal the show.

'I think Ade will score more goals than Stan because he is a proven goalscorer wherever he's been,' said Ward,

'Stan hasn't always got the goals despite having the ability. But I think the two of them together will cause huge problems as a front line partnership.

'I definitely think both players will benefit from having the other one there.

'Leicester won't thank me for saying this before he's even kicked a ball for them, but I think he will go on to even bigger things if he can settle in the Premiership.

'He'll be 27 in a couple of years time and I reckon he'll be in his prime at that stage of his career.'

Wolves sold Akinbiyi to the Foxes in a pounds 5 million deal last month and had the vision to include a sell-on clause in the transfer.

But it was Ward who took Akinbiyi from Gillingham to Bristol City for pounds 3.5 m in 1998 and is well aware of what the striker can do.

'He's the kind of player who if he makes a mistake, whether it be on the training ground or at Anfield, will do anything he can to put it right,' said Ward. …

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