THERE’S no better way to announce yourself at a new club by scoring a screamer into the top corner.
That’s exactly what Nyal Bell did last weekend, lashing home a powerful volley in front of the Chester fans to grab the Blues an equaliser in their pre-season friendly against League One side Walsall.
Although the Blues were eventually beaten 2-1, it was impossible to wipe the smile off the face of the 20-year-old striker post-match, having notched his third goal of pre-season so far, the others coming in victories at Runcorn and Bala.
“It was good to get a goal like that, I’ll always try to do as well as I can when I get on the pitch,” said Bell, on-loan from National League rivals Gateshead.
“Sometimes it can be difficult but it’s nice when the goals come so hopefully I’ve given myself a chance.
“The other goals have just been tap ins but you get different types of goals when you’re a striker so you’ve just got to do your best for the team.
“Those goals do come along but I’m just happy to score.
“The manager wants us to press from the front as high as we can and then the team can push on from that. The fact I’ve got a few goals from doing that shows I feel I’m doing good for the team.
“Obviously I prefer the 20-yard strike but if the manager likes the other ones then that’s fine!
“I need to kick-on, I feel like I’ve been playing for quite a while now so I just need to kick-on and get more games under my belt, get fit and as soon as I start playing more games I’ll be a lot better.”
Mancunian-forward Bell, who spent a short spell on loan at Chester during the 2015/16 season, hopes he’s done enough to force his way into contention for a role in Jon McCarthy’s starting XI for the campaign opener at Solihull Moors on Saturday week.
With Ross Hannah being nursed back to full fitness after a calf injury, it looks a straight fight between Bell and James Akintunde for the second striker role at Damson Park, with Harry White – who has impressed throughout pre-season – looking assured of a start.
“We’re all good players and we can all play so it’s just down to the manager as to who he picks now really,” he explained.
“We can all play football so it’s just doing as well as you can when you get the opportunity, do the best you can and try to win your place.
“It seems a much more professional set-up than last time, the club is really kicking on and it’s a great club, I love Chester.
“The manager has always been really good to me and I’m just happy to be here again to be honest and I want to focus on doing as well as I can.
“It is tough, it’s been a good blow. My legs are a bit heavy now but I’m getting fitter and fitter each game and when the season comes along I’ll be a lot fitter than I have been and I’m ready to go.”
See full story in the Chester Leader