Saturday’s fixture in Inverness saw a number of Morton players make their first team debut for the club. One in particular being youth academy graduate Alexander Easdale, who made his competitive debut, appearing from the bench in the second half of the game.
Local lad Zander made his development squad debut as a substitute in a 3-0 win over Albion Rovers at Celtic’s Lennoxtown training complex in April 2017.
The 19-year-old began his fledgling career with Port Glasgow Juniors before being picked up by Premiership outfit Aberdeen, with whom he spent two years before electing to move on and pursue his football closer to home.
Ton director of youth Derek Anderson moved quickly to recruit the striker for his 14s squad, and he steadily progressed through the ranks before signing a two-year, full-time development contract in June 2017.
Zander then put pen-to-paper once again this Summer as he signed a contract extension, committing his future to staying at Cappielow.
After a run of impressive performances in the reserve squad last season, Ton boss David Hopkin gave the striker the chance to make his first team debut in July in a pre-season friendly against Forfar Athletic before handing him his competitive debut in Saturday’s game against Inverness.
Following on from this memorable moment, we caught up with Alexander as he revealed to gmfc.net what Saturday meant to him.
How did it feel to make your debut?
It was a proud moment for me and my family. As a local Greenock boy and Morton fan, I would always go to the games and wish I was playing on the pitch with the players I was watching and I was delighted to get that chance to do what I had always dreamed of doing and that is playing for Greenock Morton.
You’ve come through the reserves, what has your time at morton been like?
It’s been amazing since I come from Aberdeen at 13 and it’s been a huge learning experience for me at my boyhood club. I have enjoyed my time with all the coaches that have helped my game and players that I have also played with who have all been a great help in my development.
How important has the gaffer been in helping you since joining?
The Gaffer has been really good with me since he’s come in to the club. He always pulls me aside and gives me helpful advice about my game and ways to improve it as a forward. I think that’s very important not just to myself but to any player if you’re getting advice from someone who’s been at the heights of football and knows as much as he knows.
How have the boys been with you since your debut?
Yeah they’ve been diffrent class all the first team boys were congratulating me after the game so that was very nice of them. Even at training as well they were asking me how I got on and how I was feeling so it’s nice to see the players showing a bit of interest in how I’m getting on.
You must have come through with some impressive players in your time in the reserves, any ones stand out for you?
I came through with Reece [Lyon] and Strappy [Lewis Strapp] and they’re obviously the main ones that would stand out as they are playing week in and week out for the first time now. I’ve also played with Lewis McGrattan at boys club level and right through to now and even Shaun Rodgers since U14s and we’re all still here so it’s great to see us developing into the players that we are now.
image: Gary Bradley