Probably the best loan move in the world! Bradford City winger Turgott having a ball (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Probably the best loan move in the world! Bradford City winger Blair Turgott having a ball
If a well-known beer brand did loan spells, it would have to be the month that Blair Turgott has just enjoyed.
The 18-year-old’s first taste of senior football just happens to have included winning appearances against Arsenal and Aston Villa.
Turgott has played internationally for England under-19s but he could never have imagined featuring in the quarter-finals and semi-finals of the Capital One Cup at such an early stage of his career.
Yet the West Ham winger remains remarkably grounded about the whole improbable scenario.
Turgott said: “That’s the league you aspire to be in one day.
“You’d think it would be a bit surreal playing against teams you see every week on Match of the Day but once you’re out there on the pitch, it just felt like facing any other person. You just treat it as a normal game.
“You can’t afford to think about who you’re up against and look at the names. Whether it’s playing in the street, or in the park with your friends, you’ve got to play the same way.
“You see the TV cameras and hear all the noise from the crowd but once you’re out there, you get in the zone and block everything out.”
Not that the teenager has complete ice in his veins. Just cast an eye over the celebration pictures after both games and Turgott features at the forefront.
“The ground was rocking last week,” he added. “Our fans were brilliant and got behind the team well.
“Even going out to warm up, you could hear the noise and feel the atmosphere. When we were on the attack the roar was so loud.
“As soon as the gaffer told me to get ready, I couldn’t get on the pitch quick enough. Zavon (Hines) had done really well and I just wanted to carry on from where he left off.”
City were 1-0 up at the time but Rory McArdle soon doubled their lead. Then Turgott almost had an assist as James Hanson’s header from his cross crashed against the bar.
The frustration at that near miss increased when Villa hit back before Carl McHugh’s bullet late on gave the Bantams a real chance when they head for the Midlands.
Turgott said: “People don’t understand how massive that goal was.
“The way it came about was good, because it was so late in the game and it finished Villa off. I don’t think any neutrals would say that we didn’t deserve to win.”
Turgott maintains City are still second favourites but the onus is now on a shaky Villa side, who’s weekend slip into the Premier League drop zone will hardly generate confidence.
“We shouldn’t be intimidated about going there. It’s up to Villa to take the game to us.
“We’re still the underdogs. It’s in their hands, it’s at their ground and the pressure is definitely on them.
“Some would say sitting behind the ball could be dangerous but we played good football the other day and I’ve got full confidence in the boys to do that again.”
Should the unthinkable happen – and City reach Wembley – then Turgott will be pleading to stay for another month. His current extension runs until February 3 – three weeks before the final.
“That would be a dream but we’ll have to cross that bridge when we come to it. I’ll have to see whether the club want to keep me and what’s going on back home.
“I knew coming to Bradford would be a great experience and I’ve got on brilliantly with everyone. I feel like I’m part of the group.
“West Ham are watching over me but while I’m here, I’ll just do my thing for this club.
“For now, first and foremost you’ve got to think about getting through to the final.”