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Press article:

Kind words for Granty - 13/01/2003

   Derby County

Lee Grant received a great pat on the back from the manager this week. Granty has made a couple of errors in recent games, but the Gaffer has stuck by him and there can be no bigger compliment. The problem with being a goalkeeper is that every mistake is punished. Other players can make errors all over the pitch and usually get away with it. But Granty’s general game is good and we must not forget that he is only 19. Goalkeepers improve with age.

It is only fair to mention Andy Oakes as well. It must be quite difficult for Oakesy. He was the club’s number one goalkeeper for a big part of last season when Mart Poom was injured. And he must have thought he would get another chance when Mart joined Sunderland on loan in November, only for Granty to be handed the shirt. But Oakesy has been tremendously professional about it. He has got on with the job, and helped and encouraged Granty.

It is a strange situation for goalkeepers at all clubs. They are battling for the same position and yet there is often a great spirit and friendship between them. We had that with Shay Given and Steve Harper when I was at Newcastle United. They wanted the same shirt and yet were still good mates. A good spirit is important at football clubs, especially when things are not going too well. If you have that, then you have a chance.

Derby Evening Telegraph

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