Ewan Henderson could see it in his mind’s eye.
When Raith Rovers goalkeeper Jamie MacDonald dashed from his penalty area to lash a loose through-ball to safety, only to sclaff his clearance straight to the youngster, a brief window of opportunity opened.
In a split second, Henderson pictured emulating one of the icons of the modern game by lofting a miraculous drive into the net from the half-way line.
“Remember the one from Wayne Rooney?” he asked the assembled media, referring to the Manchester United legend’s sensational strike for DC United against Orlando City SC.
It’s says everything about Henderson’s age that his cultural touchstone for that type of goal is not David Beckham. Regardless, it was not to be.
“I thought I was going to score but I totally scuffed it!” Indeed, it trickled harmlessly wide of the post. Meanwhile, MacDonald scampered back to the safety of his own box, disabused of any notion that he could make it as a playmaker.
Nevertheless, Henderson can be content with his display in Tuesday evening’s 0-0 draw with Raith Rovers.
He continued to thrive on the left-hand side of a midfield diamond, surging inside, making key passes and having a few efforts on goal which narrowly missed the target. The on-loan Celtic star is growing with every game.
But for Kevin O’Hara’s profligacy with a late header from six yards, Henderson would have claimed his fourth assist in six outings with a fine, whipped cross.
“It’s good for me to be playing games and the boys have been excellent with me since I came in,” said Henderson, of his progress since joining in March.
“They’ve all given me a great helping hand on and off the pitch and I’m really enjoying it.
“I’m 21 and, at my age, I need to be playing games and developing.”
Henderson echoes the opinion of Pars boss, Stevie Crawford, that the only thing missing from a fine showing by the hosts was a crucial goal. As such, Dunfermline must do the job the hard way — at Stark’s Park on Saturday.
“We thought we did very well in the game and created a lot of chances,” he continued. “But sometimes there are days when you don’t take them.
“We need to keep the head down and hopefully we’ll get the result we need on Saturday. It’ll be tough game because Raith are a top team who play lovely football. But it felt good on Tuesday night and we can take that into the second leg.”
And talk of the last meeting between the sides in Kirkcaldy on March 30 — which saw Henderson make his first start for the Pars in a 5-1 defeat — is given suitably short shrift.
“That happened ages ago so no one is fussed by it,” he added. “To bounce back and put in a performance like Tuesday night against the same team shows how mentally tough we are and how tight this group is.”