King’s Lynn Town striker proving to be a Tolley good acquisition
12:32 05 January 2013
Archant Norfolk 2013
Some Lynn fans said they didn’t need another striker when Shane Tolley signed for the club in December.
With Russell Dunkley, Sam Mulready, Danny Beaumont and Jason Turner — plus goalscoring wideman Steve Spriggs — in the ranks, why would Gary Setchell want another frontman?
Yet, he knows that you can never have too many good players at your disposal. And to be successful you can never have too many goals in your side.
Just look at arguably the most successful team of the modern era. Manchester United’s 1999 Treble winning outfit contained four strikers who all, in their own right, probably deserved a regular starting role.
Dwight Yorke, Andrew Cole, Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. All brought something different to the table.
And now, even after the departure of Turner, Setchell still has an embarrassment of riches in the striking department at The Walks.
Dunkley is one of the best number nine’s about. Beaumont and Mulready are ‘new’ strikers, full of pace, and with the ability to play out wide.
But in Tolley, Setchell has a genuine, old-fashioned, vital and match-winning goalscorer at his disposal.
The former Peterborough United youngster is a clever footballer. His movement is exceptional. But he also finds huge amounts of space in even the smallest areas.
A crowded penalty box is no problem for a man with the ability to drift off defenders and create room for himself.
And when he’s done that, he often hits the back of the net. A big 56 league goals in two seasons helped St Neots Town clinch back-to-back league titles.
He scored 20 times at the start of the season with Spalding before leaving to join Histon — where yes, you guessed it, he netted again during his brief stint.
Now, at Lynn, he has already scored four goals in just three games. Two braces at home. And all striker’s goals from inside the box.
His first, Lynn’s equaliser, was all about a frontman’s instinct to get in the six yard box and turn a cross home.
His second, the winner, was simply sublime. Jason Lee’s long ball dropped over his shoulder and Tolley controlled it and slotted home in one sweet movement.
Danny Gay was a match-winner in his own right in Lynn’s goal but Setchell’s number 10 did the business.
Strikers are meant to score goals. They get the headlines. And they get the stick when they miss chances.
Tolley missed three, but scored two. And if he keeps doing that, Lynn will surely reach those promised play-offs.