Morecambe's Burnley loanee was shocked by his Manchester United double

Ryan Cooney admitted he was taken aback after scoring his first goals in senior football during midweek.

By Gavin Browne
Friday, 20th November 2020, 12:30 pm

The Burnley loanee netted twice within four first-half minutes in helping Morecambe defeat Manchester United’s U21s 4-0 in their final Papa John’s Trophy group stage tie at the Mazuma Stadium.

After 50 appearances for Bury and the Shrimps, the 20-year-old finally got off the mark in helping Derek Adams’ side to a fifth game without defeat.

“I always had the confidence I was going to get forward but I didn’t expect to come away with two goals,” Cooney said.

Ryan Cooney scored twice for Morecambe against Manchester United's U21s in midweek Picture: Getty Images

“They’re the first two goals I’ve scored in professional football so for them to come in the same game, I’m really pleased with myself.

“I’m pleased with the goals I scored and with the performance as well.

“I feel 4-0 was a good scoreline but we could have scored more to be fair.

“Defensively, we looked solid and, breaking forward, we looked dangerous. We could have scored five or six.”

Cooney has been competing with Kelvin Mellor for a place on the right-hand side of Morecambe’s defence this season.

An ankle knock against Mansfield Town last month allowed Mellor to stake his claim for a regular starting spot and saw Cooney back on the bench upon his return to fitness.

He appeared as a substitute in the FA Cup win at Maldon and Tiptree earlier this month, albeit on the left-hand side where he featured against United’s youngsters.

However, as he displayed on Wednesday night, that enabled him to cut inside onto his right foot to clinical effect with two excellent curling finishes from distance.

While some players might feel uncomfortable at being asked to switch flanks, Cooney can at least call upon previous experience.

He said: “I enjoy it really, I played left wing-back at Bury.

“When I’m getting forward down the left, I can always get inside and get shots off.

“I feel, as a right-footed player on the left side, you’re naturally going to come inside.

“Defenders normally show people down the line but I’ve come in, shifted my body and bent it in.”

As for the manager, Adams praised Cooney’s versatility in changing position without it adversely affecting his performance level.

He said: “He did really well from the point of view he’s playing at left-back but he’s played there a number of times this season.

“He’s got forward into good areas and curled two magnificent goals into the bottom corner.

“He’s shown he can adapt from playing right-back to playing left-back.”

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