Portadown’s Adam Salley ready to grab striker spotlight
Adam Salley wants to go from waiting in the wings to taking centre-stage at Portadown.
Much of his four years at Shamrock Park has been spent playing out wide but the high-profile transfer of Lee Bonis effectively opened up a void in the centre of the frontline.
However, Salley - fresh from a goal and ‘Man of the Match’-winning display last weekend against Limavady United - has made it clear his Ports ambitions are more about consistent final end product than whatever position he starts on the pitch.
“I don’t mind where I play...I was part of a two up top with Lee at times,” said Salley ahead of today’s return to home soil but with league points at stake against Coleraine. “The manager has told me he likes it better if I get the ball (from wide on the right) and can open up instead of back to goal...to be greedy and drive at people.
“With the players we have in behind I can do the job out wide and someone can cover me up the middle.
“Hopefully we can all just gel around each other.
“When with Lee up front I would go out to the right.
“Now I could be up front and be that hold-up player to lay it off, get at people and get myself in the box.
“It nearly paid off for the second chance against Limavady, I missed the opportunity but I had pushed hard to get into the box.
“In the first half against Limavady I whipped over a ball from out wide for Sammie McLeod to meet but he was unlucky and that’s what I’m talking about...me pulling out wide and then a midfielder getting in at the back post.
“If it’s right wing or up top I don’t mind, I just want to be on the ball and score...I don’t care where I’m playing.
“Today (against Limavady) it happened I was in the box, the ball was put in and I scored a header.
“The delivery was perfect, right on my head and I had someone on my arm so just got a flick.
“Everyone says a striker needs to know where the goal is...a flick over went right over the keeper and in.
“I’ve played through the middle all my life until ‘Tippy’ (manager Matthew Tipton) changed me out the right then, in a few seasons under him, I scored (over 30 goals).
“He knows I can play and get into the box too...as a striker I know what a striker wants.
“Whether up top or wide, I just want to play and score goals.”
Salley is embracing the prospect of rivals for his position in the Ports frontline.
“With new signings coming in it will be interesting to see and there’s that extra competition for places and fighting for positions,” he said. “Players coming in makes you work that bit harder - someone in your position and if you see them in training working hard then they will stand out.
“If you’re not doing the same thing then the manager’s going to see a player hungry and if he gets a few minutes and scores or has a good game then you’re sidelined.
“That’s how football works but it’s what we need.
“The season hasn’t gone very well for me..that was my first game doing anything really in three weeks.
“I trained during the week (before the Irish Cup) and the idea was to get a full 90 in my legs before Coleraine.
“Last season I had hamstring problems and missed six or seven games then was trying to get back in but the second half of the campaign was miraculous compared to the first.
“I want this month as a clean slate and to go again now...hopefully that’s the start of it today and I can continue it.
“Hopefully we will go again (against Coleraine) and I will get another goal.”
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