Chance For Chaddy

by Mark Rowan

Nick Chadwick is ready to take advantage of Wayne Rooney's misfortune and in the process play himself into the future plans of David Moyes.

The 20-year-old has been a peripheral figure at Goodison Park ever since Rooney burst on to the scene last season and he has been forced to make do with reserve team football.

Emerging perhaps as Everton's forgotten man, many forget that he scored three times in three consecutive home games when Moyes first arrived and that was before his young team-mate had even pulled on a first team jersey.

But injury prevented him from carrying on where he left off when the 2002/03 campaign kicked-off and he has spent the last 12 months switching between the treatment room and the reserves.

Chadwick, however, has now put a very difficult season behind him and is totally focused on securing a first team role, knowing that with Rooney sidelined and Duncan Ferguson suspended for the opening three games; he has a chance even if Moyes is tempted to enter the transfer market.

But he says he wants his opportunity to come on merit as opposed to being the only other striker at the disposal of the Blues Boss.

"I would like to think I put forward more of a claim than being the only fit forward," Chaddy told

"It is obviously disappointing for Wayne and everybody at the club because nobody likes to see anyone injured, but that's football.

"I was injured last season, Wayne is now and Duncan is suspended for the first couple of games, so perhaps there is a little opening there.

"I will have to wait and see. I don't know what the manager has planned for the start of the season and all I can do is work hard and play football."

Disappointed at not being included in the original squad that travelled to St Andrews, Chaddy was all set for an appearance at Rhyl for the reserves on Wednesday.

Instead he may get a small run-out, along with Leon Osman, at Tannadice when the Blues complete their mini-pre-season tour with a game against Dundee United.

"The gaffer pulled me and Ossie to one side and told us that we wouldn't be going to Scotland," he continued.

"He thought it would be more beneficial if we stayed behind and got 90 minutes under our belts but there was a chance we could get called -up if there were any injuries.

"With Wayne getting injured I suppose that has opened the door for us both and it is up to us now."

Chadwick, who scored a hat-trick against Bad Goisern in Austria, is unsure though if he would rather be back on Merseyside getting necessary games under his belt with the second string or up hre in Scotland gaining invaluable experience with the first team.

He added: "It is difficult. At this stage of the season it is obviously important to get 90 minutes under your belt but it is difficult to go to places like Leigh, especially when there is only a couple of you who have first team experience.

"It was disappointing not to come up in the first place but now I am here, I hope I can get a chance on Wednesday and press my claims for a place.

"I have done well in the pre-season games so far and I am looking to build on that and I am sure I can do a job.

"I will always work hard but you have to take your chances when they come along. If it does come at the very start then I have to make sure that I am ready."

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