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EE: Maguire - I need games to prove my critics wrong

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By Sean Wallace


Published: 26/11/2008


TEENAGE Dons striker Chris Maguire today claimed he is sick of being written off at the tender age of just 19.


Maguire is furious that critics have labelled him a flop so early in his career.


Billed as Aberdeen’s brightest new hope when he made his debut in May 2006, he has since failed to command a regular start.


But he wants the chance to shoot down Motherwell on Saturday to silence his critics.


He said: “It is so frustrating to hear people say that my chance is over already.


“I am far from the finished article but it’s ridiculous for people to write me off.


“I am only 19, I am still young and still learning, but I need games to prove my critics wrong.


“I am sure if I can get on from the start I can shut them all up.


“It is a few years since I made my debut for Aberdeen and you need to get regular games to keep progressing as a player.â€


The striker came on as a second half substitute at Ibrox in the 2-0 defeat, to complete a week where he also won his debut Scotland U21 cap.


And now he is desperate to prove his worth against Motherwell.


“Every player gets stick, but the secret is to rise above it and focus on making your game better,†he said.


“The gaffer knows exactly what I am capable of, and that is all that matters.


“He sees it every day in training.


“I have been working really hard in training and have performed well for the reserves, I am ready.


“The gaffer has been impressed with my fitness and stamina this season.


“I have worked very hard to improve that by going to the gym.


“This season I am fitter and sharper than ever.


“Hopefully I can get a start against Motherwell so I can show everyone what I can do.â€


Aberdeen trail Hearts by eight points in the race for third place and a UEFA Cup spot.


But Maguire is convinced they can close that gap.


“We have shown just how good we can be in recent weeks by pushing teams close,†he said.


“Aberdeen have also been able to grind out results when we have not played at our best, as was shown against St Mirren.


“We must win on Saturday to keep the charge for third place going.


“Aberdeen tasted European football last season and we want to experience it again.â€


Meanwhile, a second half double from substitute Gary Carroll saw the Dons reserves beat 10-man Dundee United 2-0 at Glebe Park.


United midfielder Prince Buaben was red carded midway through the first half for a lunge on Maguire.

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Jimmys response in the EE




JIMMY Calderwood today warned teenage striker Chris Maguire he will have to cool it to hit the big time at Pittodrie.


The Dons boss slated the teen for risking a red card in a tussle with Rangers’ Kirk Broadfoot at Ibrox in last weekend’s 2-0 defeat.


Maguire, 19, revealed in yesterday’s Evening Express that he is sick of being labelled a Dons flop by critics.


But Calderwood reckons Maguire will only reach his true potential if he calms down on the pitch.


He said: “Chris is a good player and hopefully this will be the season he makes his mark.


“Unfortunately he still gets involved too much with things away from play.


“That was shown at Ibrox when he got involved in a tussle with Kirk Broadfoot.


“I don’t know what Chris’ problem was because he would not have stood much of a chance against Broadfoot.


“It was just stupidity on Chris’ part because Broadfoot would have sucked him in and spat him out.


“There was no need for that, it was petulance, and he needs to add some maturity, but that will come.


“However, I do not want him to completely lose that edge to his game.â€


Maguire has impressed Calderwood as a substitute in recent games, and is likely to be on the bench again for Saturday’s SPL clash with Motherwell at Pittodrie.


But the Dons boss revealed he was on the verge of being dropped, until he gave Maguire an ear bashing.


“To his credit Chris has been performing very well in the reserves, and has done well when he has come on as a sub,†he said.


“But about five weeks ago he was not playing well and did not deserve to be on the bench at that time.


“He was only named as a substitute because of the Under-21 rule.


“If I could have got away with it Maguire would not have been on the bench .


“I had a wee word in his ear and for the last four weeks he has been fabulous.


“That is why he has been getting on as a substitute now.


“He is champing at the bit to get a start and that is what I want to see from my players.â€


With fellow 19-year-old Sone Aluko now a first team regular, Calderwood can now boast one of the youngest teams in the SPL.


“I had five players under-21 at the recent game against Rangers,†he said.


“That is fantastic for the future of the club.


“Sone is just 19 and will only get better, and no defender would relish coming up against him.â€

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