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Craig Wighton jumped at Arbroath chance after realising he ‘didn’t fit’ with John Hughes’ Dunfermline plans

Craig Wighton
Craig Wighton

Craig Wighton says he jumped at the chance to rejoin Arbroath after realising he didn’t fit into John Hughes’ plans at Dunfermline.

The attacker made his second debut for the Lichties in the 2-1 win over Raith Rovers at the weekend, sending them four points clear at the top of the table.

Wighton has been restricted to a number of appearances from the bench for the Pars, only completing two full games this season.

‘These things happen’

He dismissed any notion of a falling out between the Dunfermline boss and says the decision to move to the league leaders was purely a footballing one.

“Every manager’s got their own plan and way of playing,” he said. “I don’t think I really fitted into that.

Craig Wighton's playing time at Dunfermline was limited.
Craig Wighton’s playing time at Dunfermline was limited.

“I know I’m good enough to be playing there but that’s not my decision so I just need to go out and do well for Arbroath and that’s all I’m focused on.

“These things happen. There’s not a falling out or any bad blood. It happens in football.

“I don’t want to sit there on the bench till the end of the season. I want to play games and I’ve got a great opportunity so hopefully I can repay the manager’s faith in me.”

Move was weeks in making

The 24-year-old revealed he had discussions with Dick Campbell weeks before the deal was sealed last Friday, but feared it may not have happened.

“I had a couple of options and I spoke to the manager here a few weeks ago,” he said.

“I thought it was going to be difficult to get it done. But I just wanted to get games.

“I know the manager well and how he works and when he asked me to come back, I wanted to get it done straight away.”

Familiar faces

Wighton was initially on loan at the club from Hearts in 2020, but his time was cut short due to the Covid pandemic.

Although a brief stint, the former Dundee attacker still managed to find the net three times in five games.

Craig Wighton during his first stint at Arbroath
Craig Wighton during his first stint at Arbroath.

Arbroath’s side remains largely unchanged from his first stint and the striker says that has made it easy to bed back into the team.

“There are maybe one or two new faces,” he said. “There are a couple of boys who weren’t here last time but I’ve played with previously, so I know pretty much all of them.

“They are a right good group and they deserve to be where they are.

“They’ve been brilliant this season and hopefully I can add to that.”

3 Arbroath talking points: What next for the Lichties as 40 point target surpassed in win over Raith Rovers

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