On-loan Celtic defender Daniel Church loving life at East Fife

Daniel Church's throw starts another East Fife move down the park. Pic by Kenny Mackay.
Daniel Church's throw starts another East Fife move down the park. Pic by Kenny Mackay.

Teenage defender Daniel Church says he’s getting a fantastic introduction into senior football at Bayview

The left-back is on-loan at East Fife from Celtic and is steadily starting to make an impact at the club.

Church was handed a start by boss Darren Young on Saturday and was part of an impressive defensive unit which had to help grind out a 1-0 win over Forfar.

It represented another step forward in the 19-year-old’s fledgling career and he’s keen to rack up more minutes during his time playing at League One level.

“It’s a different experience for me because I’ve been with Celtic my whole career so far,” he said.

“It’s a different challenge at East Fife and I’m happy I came.

“The boys have all taken to me really well.”

Church may have an impressive pedigree at youth level, winning caps throughout the national youth ranks, but he’s had to be patient at Bayview.

The early season form of the undefeated Methil men has presented Young with the opportunity to keep a settled side.

The Bayview boss has praised the attitude of the likes of Church and others in the squad for keeping their heads down and waiting for their opportunity.

“You can’t change a winning team and Pat (Slattery) has been great,” said Church.

“You just have to keep working hard, bide your time in training, and show the gaffer that he can trust you.

“Hopefully I did that.

“There’s a togetherness at the club and that shows out on the pitch as well because we haven’t lost a game yet.

“Competition is healthy in a team and if Pat and me are doing well then it’s a great headache for the manager to have.

“Steven Boyd comes in and scores as well.

“The boys who are out of the team keep on pushing those who are in it.

“The gaffer then picks his side and if you’re picked it’s up to you to make an impact.”

The Fifers looked as if they’d cruise to victory on Saturday after Steven Boyd’s first goal for the club set them up after just eight minutes.

But Forfar responded well and it was up to Church and the rest of the guys at the back to preserve the three points.

“We looked in control during the first half and it would have been good to go in with the pressure off and two or three goals up,” said the defender.

“But we then had to ride the storm in the second half.

“If you look back at the season a 1-0 win will always get you three points. Teams will shut up shop and you’ll take any 1-0 win you can get.”