Joy for Shrewsbury Town striker Stefan Payne as the goals fly in
Hot-shot Stefan Payne feels he is showing fans his true worth by banging in the goals for Shrewsbury.
The in-form striker has lit up Montgomery Waters Meadow after notching seven times in 11 appearances following his switch from Barnsley.
Payne, 26, struggled to make an impact during a loan spell with Town last season after a recurrence of a metatarsal injury 11 minutes into his debut.
But the-then Tykes loanee, who signed a two-year deal with Shrewsbury in the summer, has hit the ground running this time around.
“From my point of view it’s good to show what I can do,” said Payne. “I didn’t do myself justice coming in last year and getting injured, before trying to play through the injury.
“It’s good that I can show and prove people wrong, so to speak.
“You just want to score goals, personally. You don’t really look at it beforehand and say ‘we’ll be unbeaten after so many games’. You can’t really write that stuff.”
Payne’s strike ratio is up there among the big-hitters from the top four divisions. But the former non-league hitman is kept on his toes by team-mate Carlton Morris.
Norwich loanee Morris has four goals himself and has caught the eye of Town fans whenever featuring in the lone role at the tip of Paul Hurst’s 4-1-4-1 formation.
The pair doubled up at Walsall as Hurst and Town went in search of a late winner. The boss has previously hinted that Town will switch to two strikers at some point in the season.
And Payne is confident that he and Morris will click alongside one another.
“It’s not just the fans that are excited by that (partnership), I am too after doing all that hard work up front on my own!” Payne joked.
“No, to be honest, you can’t really change it because of what we’ve been doing but it would be great one day to work up there with Carlton.
“You never know about a partnership really. You see partners who don’t work out and some that do. I think there’s too much potential and ability in me and Carlton to not work. I think we’d be a real handful for defenders, if and when it does happen.”
Town boast one of the best defensive records in League One this season having conceded just eight goals in 12 games.
Payne added: “The people at the back are magnificent. Me and Carlton get the plaudit and headlines but sometimes it goes without saying that the defence and Deano (Henderson) are terrific.”
“We need to score the goals and they need to keep the clean sheets. At the moment the team’s doing very well.”