Dundee keeper Elliott Parish hasn’t looked back since baptism of fire

Elliott Parish.

To say Elliott Parish had a baptism of fire in a Dundee shirt would be an understatement.

With barely seconds on the clock against Hibs at Easter Road on his debut for the Dark Blues, the big Englishman was picking a Martin Boyle strike out of the back of his net.

However, Parish who started his career at Aston Villa, has not looked back since, keeping two clean sheets in his five games for the club.

The 27-year-old admits he is relishing his run in the team and loves sampling new experiences in Scottish football – which is why he cannot wait for tonight’s trip to Tynecastle to face Hearts.

Parish, who has played at a whole host of clubs including Bristol City, Blackpool and Colchester, said: “I think Hibs scored after about 60 seconds in my first game for Dundee.

“I must admit when you’re standing there you want to make a big impact and impression for your team-mates and the fans.

“So you think to yourself this isn’t ideal after losing such an early goal!

“The first time I touched the ball was when I kicked it back after conceding.

“It was a helluva strike from the Hibs lad. There was nothing I could do.”

With former first-choice keeper Scott Bain out in the cold and subject to an ongoing disciplinary process, Parish looks certain to be between the sticks for the foreseeable future for the Dark Blues.

However, he is taking absolutely nothing for granted.

Parish added: “For me, there’s a long way to go to cement the no.1 shirt.

“I think that can take a long period of time.

“I’ve just got to be consistent and offer the lads, the manager and everyone loads of support and keep being there for them.

“There’s more to come from me – plenty more.

“I can only see myself getting better and better by playing more and more games.

“We’ve done so much work in training with the defence so again that develops understanding.

“I think people have seen that in the past few games with us being much more solid at the back.

“Now we’re a difficult outfit to break down.

“All games in this league are difficult but this is one of the toughest going away to Hearts.

“But it’s great for me getting to go to another new stadium in my first year up here.

“Hearts are a good outfit. I can’t wait and I just want games to come thick and fast.

“I would play every day. I’m loving it right now.”

The personable Parish admits it is good to talk on the pitch and he sees that as a vital part of his job as a goalie.

He said: “I think the talking part of a keeper goes unnoticed sometimes as obviously there’s the atmosphere going on around you.

“But it’s massive and it could be just a little thing with someone running off one of our defenders and him not seeing it.

“I’m there to point it out and it’s so vital. It can stop so many goals at this level.”

Parish though was unable to prevent Scott McKenna scoring what proved to be the only goal of Friday night’s game with Aberdeen at Dens.

However, he felt Dundee would have taken something from the match if it hadn’t been for a couple of incredible stops from his good pal, Dons keeper Joe Lewis.

Parish said: “I thought the boys played fantastically well against Aberdeen.

“They are a good side and I think it was made tougher as well by the fact they had sorted everything out with regards to their manager.

“On another night, maybe Joe doesn’t make those kind of saves and we end up getting a draw or possibly the win.

“It was very frustrating to lose but what a save from Joe to deny Roarie Deacon.

“He’s a top keeper and he showed it again. He basically won them the game.

“Some days you’re just going to find someone in that kind of form so it’s difficult.”