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Dundee United new boy Joe Piggott reveals he learned a lot from Duncan Ferguson

Joe Piggott makes his debut against Alloa
Joe Piggott makes his debut against Alloa

Joe Piggott has revealed that as a kid learning how to be a striker at Everton he was coached by one of the best – former Dundee United star Duncan Ferguson.

Tannadice boss Ray McKinnon snapped up the 19-year-old front man on transfer deadline day last week and handed him his first start for the club in Saturday’s victory over Alloa in the Irn-Bru Challenge Cup.

Piggott is now looking to put into practise all he learned from former Tangerines favourite Ferguson and ultimately establish himself in the United first team.

Piggott, who has also played for Rochdale, said: “I was at Everton from Under-10s to 16s. I have been a fan since I was a kid.

“I played with lads such as Tom Davies who is currently in the first team and Kieran Dowell who is at Nottingham Forest now.

“I was coached by Kevin Sheedy and Duncan Ferguson. He did striker training with us and always had a laugh with us.

“Duncan is a great lad and a good coach. He taught me a lot, like throw some elbows out there! No, seriously, he just told me to compete for everything in the air, hold the ball up and get shots off.

“I was told a few weeks back that he started at Dundee United.

“I was young when he was playing but I have seen videos of him and he was class.

“When I was a kid, I tried to be like he was as a player – a big striker trying to hold on to the ball like he did.”

Piggott was one of nine changes against Alloa from the previous week’s league game at St Mirren with McKinnon giving youth a chance alongside some older heads in need of game time.

However, it was the visitors who had the first good opportunity in the 23rd minute when former Dundee left-back Daryll Meggatt cut the ball back to Kevin Cawley just inside the Tangerines’ box but he dragged his shot wide with the goal at his mercy.

The Wasps then had another chance in the 44th minute but Alan Cook lost his composure and blasted his shot over.

However, it was United who finally broke the deadlock in the 72nd minute. Patrick N’Koyi burst into the Wasps box and was brought down by Andy Graham with referee Willie Collum having no hesitation in awarding a penalty.

N’Koyi picked himself up to take the spot-kick, calmly sending Alloa keeper Neil Parry the wrong way and the ball into the back of the net.

But just six minutes later, Alloa equalised. Sub Adam Martin teed up Cawley who gave United keeper Deniz Mehmet no chance with a drilled low shot from 16 yards.

The game looked destined to head to extra-time but in the 91st minute, N’Koyi set up Paul McMullan on the edge of the Alloa box and he made no mistake, sending a superb strike flying past Parry.

The icing was well and truly put on the cake just two minutes later when home skipper Willo Flood hit a thunderous drive from 20 yards that flew past the helpless Parry.

Piggott admitted he had enjoyed his first taste of Scottish football and he believes he is suited to the game up here.

He added: “It was my first game for a few months so I felt I did all right.

“I enjoyed playing in the game. It was a bit more physical than back in England but the tempo was good.

“I think I will be suited to the game here. I am still settling in at the moment trying to get my fitness up.

“I know Mark Robertson who used to play for Dundee. He had a contact at United and Mark recommended me to him for a trial.

“I came up here about a month ago but got injured in training. I came back up two weeks ago and then I signed on Thursday.

“I am just looking to get first-team football here.

“I want to establish myself at that level, to play games and score goals.

“That’s my main aim really.”

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