It’s been a long road back but Dundee striker Alex Jakubiak is “looking sharp” ahead of the new season.
The 24-year-old got the Dark Blues’ final goal in the Premier Sports Cup Group C rout of the Highland League champions at Dens Park.
Paul McGowan opened the scoring, while Paul McMullan grabbed a brace. However, it was Jakubiak who McPake was most pleased for after recovering from serious ankle and thigh injuries that kept him out for most of his debut campaign.
The response to his goal from his team-mates also heartened McPake – something he believes is indicative of the environment that’s been fostered at the club.
‘He’s done all the work, he’s back and looking sharp’
“You can still see he’s getting frustrated with himself at times but he was out a long time,” McPake said of the former Watford man.
“It was almost a full season, he didn’t play much football at all so it’s been a good pre-season for him.
“He’s done all the work, he’s back and looking sharp.
“He gets his goal, which you could see he was delighted with, and it was great how his team-mates responded as well. They’re pleased for him.
“There’s a real togetherness in that group and that will help you throughout the season.
“I’m delighted for him and for them all really.”
McPake expecting a ‘better’ McMullan
McMullan, however, stole the show.
Playing a hand in every goal, scoring two himself and laying on McGowan and Jakubiak, the 25-year-old was in scintillating form.
And McPake expects to see more of the same from the winger in the Premiership this season – adding goals to a repertoire that last term saw McMullan rack up a barrel of assists.
“I think he was frustrated last season,” McPake added.
“He kept going on about not getting the goals but he offered us so much more in terms of assists.
“We saw that last night with his two assists and two goals.
“He was unlucky a lot last season because he gets himself in some great areas with his pace.
“He’s a throwback of what you would call an out and out winger but he’s not just that.
“What Paul’s really good at is coming in the pitch and playing as well. That’s where his goals will come.
“He scored a great goal against West Ham on Friday (2-2 friendly draw) in that kind of area – a great finish.
“He’s not just about getting on the touchline, beating a man and crossing it – he can play and he’s really clever.
“He’s a lot fitter now for having the pre-season and the run of games he got towards the end of last season and I think you’ll see an even better Paul McMullan.
“Without the goals he scares any team, but if he starts adding them then he becomes a proper real threat to any team in any division in Scotland.”