Saints want Malcolm to partner Frendo up front

Trialist Michael Malcolm deflects David Keenleyside's shot into the net. Picture: Bob Walkley

Trialist Michael Malcolm deflects David Keenleyside's shot into the net. Picture: Bob Walkley - Credit: Archant

St Albans City joint manager James Gray believes he may have found the striker to partner John Frendo.

Michael Malcolm, a former Wealdstone and Whitehawk striker, scored in Tuesday’s Herts Senior Cup win over Hadley while displaying many of the qualities the Saints have been missing since Mark Nwokeji left the club. Last season, in 25 starts alongside Nwokeji, Frendo scored 25 goals, more than half of his output over the campaign.

Malcolm showed the pace to get behind defenders and his tireless running drew the defenders’ attention away from Frendo, who scored twice, including the winner. Taking defenders’ focus off Frendo is something joint managers Gray and Graham Golds realise they must do if they are to get last season’s top scorer back on form.

“I’ve liked Michael for a while,” said Gray. “After tonight’s performance he could be the kind of player to work well with Frendo. He played down the middle in the first half and made great runs in behind but we never got the ball to him. He played to the right of a front three in the second half and his touch and movement create quite a bit for us. He was unfortunate not to get a couple more goals.”

He added: “I haven’t seen any of our forwards do what he did: stretch and run behind the defence. Charlie Smith had the option of dropping the in behind the centre-half and full-back and Michael was stretching the play that way. He’s the player I’ve been looking for. We’ll try get him down to training on Thursday and we might be able to do something with him.”

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