For the first time in many years the supporters of Waterford United have a player who excites them and every time he gets near the ball one can feel an extraordinary sense of wonder. David Grincell, who played his schoolboy football with Dean Celtic in Kilkenny and then played with Waterford Bohemians, Tramore and of course with the Waterford Youth team, is a rare talent who has the ability to get people off their seats every time he gets control of the ball.
Five goals in four matches is only half the story. He opened his account against Longford Town some weeks ago with a wonderful strike from 35 yards. He then scored superbly on two occasions against Sporting Fingal and he repeated that act against Limerick 37 on Friday last. All five goals have been special: thrilling volleys, spell-binding skill on the ground which has seen defenders turned inside out and first-touch classics. Quite simply the boy has the lot.
Off the park he is a very unassuming person and he was reluctant to talk about his amazing goals following last weekend’s game. He had to be persuaded by Gareth Cronin and Eddie Jackman to give his views. The slagging he got from the rest of the team probably did not help matters but if he continues to score such incredible goals this is an area of the game he will have to get used to.
“That was a great result for the team,” said David. “We knew Limerick had improved recently and they made it hard for us but the lads were great. Our back four are top class. The midfield worked hard and thankfully we took the chances that came our way. I was happy to score the first goal but Gareth said I was offside, but he would say that, wouldn’t he,” quipped ‘Grinny’.
His second strike was even better that his first in many ways but David was taking it all in his stride. “The ball just came into my path and I just hit it. Getting a run in the team has helped me but when you have players like Vinny Sullivan who has scored nine goals, Willie John Kiely and ‘Bermo’ [Karl Bermingham] fighting for a place you have to take your chance when it comes. I suppose I will have to keep scoring to keep my place.”
David is a nephew of the former Waterford United midfield player, Jimmy Donnelly, and the goalscoring magician admitted that his uncle is getting a great deal of pleasure from his exploits. “Jimmy has bought a season ticket and he is coming to all of the games. He is delighted because he had lost interest for a while but now he is at all the games with my other uncle.
“I had a bit of an injury coming into the game but Eddie Jackman worked on it all week. It got a little sore near the end and I thought it was better to come off. We have some time now to get fit for the Dundalk game and we just cannot wait for that game now,” concluded the new kid on the block, a lad who will bring the crowds back to the RSC in their droves.
When a smiling Gareth Cronin emerged from the dressing room I put it to him that David Grincell is different class. “Yea but he is getting to big for his boots,” he laughed. “I might leave him out for the Dundalk game,” he added as his smile got even broader.
On a serious note Gareth Cronin paid tribute to the new hero of Waterford football. The first goal David scored was top class. He looked more like a 30-year-old player rather than a 20-year-old with the composure he showed. His second was brilliant also. It got the crowd buzzing such was the class of his strike.
“He could perhaps be the players who will win the league for us. He looks after himself. He will have to strengthen his upper body but that will come with time. He is a real find and his class will hopefully bring the crowds back to the RSC.
“Karl Bermingham was very good tonight also and with Willie John Kiely and Vinny Sullivan available also we have a potent strike force. We were sluggish at time but Mike Kerley has put together a completely different Limerick team compared to the team we beat twice already.
“Tierney from Cork City looks a fine player and with Purcell and Barrett back they made us battle all the way and as a result the game became stretched. I decided to play Kevin Waters at left full-back because it was something I wanted to do for some time. He can get in some great balls from the left and he did pick out Luke and Karl at times, but Robbie Clarke is still the first choice in that position.
“We played three games last week and the lads got tired but we have a break now to get ready for the Dundalk game on August 21st. We will train on Monday and Wednesday and then rest up until next Sunday”.
When asked if he though the Blues could win the league he had no doubt that promotion can be achieved. “We have a wonderful record here at the RSC and that is important. We are unbeaten in 10 games both home and away. We have 13 games left to play. We can win our 6 home games. If we win 9 and draw 4 we will win the league.
“Coming up are away games with Dundalk and Shelbourne and we know the importance of those games. I am looking forward to the little break, as indeed are the players, but nevertheless we cant wait to get to Oriel Park,” said a very pleased Blues manager.
David Grincell put pen to paper on a new two-year deal with Waterford United on Monday.