FC Halifax Town: Striker Quigley determined to put frustrating spell behind him

Football - FC Halifax Town v Braintree. Scott Quigley for Halifax.
Football - FC Halifax Town v Braintree. Scott Quigley for Halifax.

Striker Scott Quigley says his frustrating loan spell at Port Vale earlier this season has only strengthened his resolve to fire Halifax up the National League table.

The forward joined The Shaymen on loan from Blackpool last week, and made his debut in the 0-0 draw at home to Braintree on Saturday.

Quigley joined Blackpool for £35,000, rising to £50,000, from Welsh Premier League champions The New Saints on a two-year deal in August 2017.

The striker won every major Welsh honour during his time with The Saints, and left the club after eight years with a record of 25 goals in 89 Welsh Premier League games plus six goals in 13 Champions League matches.

After a successful loan spell at Wrexham last season in which Quigley netted seven goals in 18 games, he joined Neil Aspin’s Port Vale on a season-long loan in July.

But that was cut short earlier this month having played only 13 times for the club, 11 of which were as a substitute.

“I’ve always believed in myself, but when you think you should be playing and you’re not, it was hard to take,” he said.

“It was a bitter pill to swallow because I thought I was going there to play.

“But that’s not knocked my confidence, that’s going to push me on even more to want to succeed.

“Hopefully people will look at that six-month spell as a blip.”

Quigley has also found first-team opportunities limited at parent club Blackpool, making only 14 appearances for them, of which only five were starts.

“I’m a strong believer of what will be, will be, and whatever happens at the end of the season, I know the manager at Blackpool does really like me, but I just want to come here and make sure I play to the best of my ability,” Quigley said.

“I’m not really thinking about the end of the season.

“At the end of the day, you’ve got to get the fans on your side.

“Saturday was my first game. I’d only started training on the Thursday.

“It can only get better. I’ve got so much more to give to the club.

“I’ve been limited to coming off the bench. Other than Boxing Day, I hadn’t played 90 minutes for two months.

“I want to kick on as fast as I can. I’m just looking forward to my time here.”

Quigley said Halifax manager Jamie Fullarton was the biggest factor in his decision to join The Shaymen instead of the various other clubs rumoured to be interested in him.

“It was definitely the gaffer,” Quigley said on what attracted him to Halifax. “I was really impressed with his desire to get me in, how much he wanted me.

“He made me feel like he really, really wanted me to come.

“Everyone knows I had other people wanting me, but I thought this was the right fit for me, I wanted to play games, get my fitness back up.

“As soon as a goal goes on, I think I’ll be off, and that’ll be it.”

When asked how he would describe himself as a player, the 26-year-old said: “Everyone says I’m 6 foot 4 and I’m supposed to be good in the air, I’m a target man, but I’ve never played as a target man.

“At TNS I was always running down the channels, but since being in England I’ve had to adapt my game to be that focal point because if the ball goes up there, you’ve got to keep it, flick it on.

“On Saturday I thought I had my fair share, although after about 70 minutes I couldn’t jump because I was getting cramp.

“But I’ve got so much more to give, and training with the lads will make me better.”

On his time in the English game since joining Blackpool, Quigley said: “It was obviously a big step. I played a bit but not as much as I wanted, so it was better for me to go out on loan, get some experience in the English league as I hadn’t played in it before.

“I felt I did really well at Wrexham where I established myself in this league.

“Then the next step was to go into the Football League with Port Vale, which didn’t really suit me.

“They didn’t really play my style of football. There was another lad there who was good as well and he was picked ahead of me, and the majority of the time I had to come off the bench.

“As a player, you’re not happy with just sitting on the bench, you want to play.

“I didn’t want to become rusty by just sitting on the bench, so I opted to come here.”

Quigley believes he has still improved as a player since coming to England.

“Yeah massively. The first six months in Blackpool improved me massively.

“There were some really good players at TNS but in that league you’re not playing against (players) as good as you every week.

“You’re having 70, 80 per cent possession of the ball and loads of chances.

“But I came to England to get more experience and first and foremost I want to get Halifax up the league, and add goals and assists - that’s my job.”

Quigley says he is determined to be “an influence” while at Halifax and help move The Shaymen up the table.

“I want to score goals, assist goals,” he said. “You never know what can happen come the end of a season.

“Hopefully in the next game, with a proper week’s training with the lads, I can crack on from there.”