Speaking to the press after Saturday’s victory over Sheffield United at the Lamex Stadium, manager Gary Smith spoke highly of hat-trick hero Dani Lopez, whose three goals helped Boro to all three points.
Lopez has been on loan at Aldershot Town and Barnet in League Two this season as he adapts to the English game and those moves clearly paid dividends as the Spanish striker has returned to the club stronger and better than ever.
On Lopez’s first goal, which gave Boro a half time lead, Smith said “I thought the centre back was climbing all over him but he used his body well and turned him nicely inside the box and the one thing that, if we all get the opportunity to see him enough, is that if he gets the opportunity in front of goal – as you can see – you feel confident that certainly he will might make the goalkeeper work”
He described Dani’s third goal as “an absolute corker” and continued, “He has been out to Aldershot and to Barnet in League Two, he speaks very little English, he has had to find the English game, iron out some wrinkles and take a few knocks.
“It’s not easy playing in League One and Two, he scored 9 goals in 15 games at League Two level and as a forward or a creative player, when you’re confident sometimes it doesn’t matter what level you’re playing at you just feel like you’re going to score goals. We’ve seen today that he has got bundles of ability, two very good feet, and if you can get him in and around that penalty area what he will do is work a good angle and he’ll get a shot off. Today everything has gone for him, there was some very good quality and on other occasions maybe he has just done a little bit too much but he’s won the game.”
The full interview as well as the thoughts of Dani Lopez through a translator, is available now on Boro Player!