Carlton Morris thriving on Shrewsbury competition
Carlton Morris is aiming to repay the faith shown in him by boss Paul Hurst as he continues to hold down a spot in Shrewsbury’s starting line-up.
The on-loan Norwich frontman has been keeping top goalscorer Stefan Payne out of the side over the past month.
Morris was recalled to Hurst’s first XI for the home victory against Blackpool in mid-December and Shrewsbury have not lost since, with the forward winning praise from supporters for his performances.
The 22-year-old was selected to start in crunch league games against Portsmouth and at Wigan on Boxing Day, and also got the nod in the high-profile televised FA Cup tie with West Ham.
He is expected to continue to lead the line in the lone striker role at promotion rivals Blackburn today and he is determined to hang on to his place.
“I haven’t been dropped yet!” smiled Morris. “So I think the management have been pleased.
“But all I can do is go out there and do what I can do, work my hardest, give my all to the game and play well.
“I must be doing something right, but it’s good having Stef in the team too. Having top quality players in your position pushes you on to be at your best all the time.
“That’s what I need sometimes.
“It was tough, it’s not nice being out of the team and coming on as sub can be hard.
“You’ve just got to wait, keep your head down, bide your time, and when you come back in keep your standards as high as you can.
“There’s people waiting (to take your place), we’ve good a good squad, camaraderie’s good, but it’s also a competitive squad.
“You’ve got to keep your standards up the whole time and keep performances high.
Morris started in the league defeats at both Peterborough and Bury earlier in the campaign but found starts tough to come by while Payne commanded the forward role in Hurst’s 4-1-4-1 set-up.
He netted his six Town goals across 14 games between August and November but has since gone 13 outings without finding the net.
The centre-forward added: “I’ve been fairly happy. I’ve been hoping to get and take a few more chances but I’m sure they’ll come if I keep working hard.
“We’ve got the quality in the team for that.”