AFC Telford's Marcus Dinanga pledges to repay faith of boss
Marcus Dinanga is out to repay AFC Telford United boss Gavin Cowan’s faith in him and remind fans of his goalscoring prowess.
Dinanga – the Bucks’ top scorer two seasons ago – insists next campaign is a ‘big’ one for him after not nailing down a regular starting spot upon his return to the club in January.
Having signed an 18-month deal then, he was the only player already contracted for next term.
Conversations with Cowan reaffirmed the Telford chief’s belief in the 21-year-old, who said: “It is a big season for me after not having the best season last year.
“The gaffer has got a lot of trust in me, so I’m not going to let him down.
“I am going to work hard on and off the pitch to get the goals needed to help the team push forward, hopefully to the play-offs or even automatic promotion.”
Dinanga took National League North by storm while on loan at Telford from Burton Albion in the 2016/17 term, grabbing 25 goals in all competitions.
The Brewers loaned him out to National League outfit Hartlepool at the start of last season.
He found minutes hard to come by in the North East though.
Cowan then swooped for him, but a combination of being cup-tied for the FA Trophy and Daniel Udoh’s prolific campaign – which earned him a move to Shrewsbury earlier this summer – meant Dinanga was often watching on from the sidelines.
He ended the term with 15 Bucks appearances under his belt – seven starts, eight as a substitute – and two goals to his name.
It is safe to say Dinanga wants to vastly improve on that tally this season.
He has a target in mind, although he did not share it.
“I’ve got a number in my head and I’m sure I’m going to reach it this year,” added Dinanga.
“It is a clean slate for everyone, and I am happy after having a good chat with the gaffer after the end of last season.
“He knows what I can do, and wants me to show it again.”
Dinanga will be competing against Andre Brown, new-boy Aaron Williams and player-coach Matthew Barnes-Homer for a starting spot next season.
Target man Amari Morgan-Smith, who chipped in with eight league goals last campaign, is yet to re-sign with Telford or sign for anyone else.