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Loan watch special - Grant's eventful week

Posted on 29 July 2014  - 11:00

It’s been a week of mixed emotions for Grant Ward.

Grant challenges Ryan Mason in Saturday's friendlyUp against Lewis Holtby at Toyota Park

Our on-loan midfielder scored his first MLS goal for Chicago Fire against San Jose Earthquakes last Wednesday night – but the celebrations were subdued with his side on the receiving end of a 5-1 defeat in California.

He then found himself in the unusual position of playing against his parent club at the weekend, the 19-year-old lining up against us in our 2-0 friendly victory at Toyota Park on Saturday night.

It all added up to a testing, if not slightly bemusing, week for the teenager.

Nevertheless, Grant believes he’s learned lessons from Fire’s last two outings and is feeling refreshed ahead of his side’s return to MLS action after a run of substitute appearances allowed him to recharge his batteries.

“I feel like I’ve done well at the club so far,” he said. “I started quite a lot of games in a row recently and was feeling a little bit fatigued, but I’ve been going on as a substitute in the last few games – aside from the Spurs one where I obviously started – and I’m feeling the benefits of being rested now to be honest.

“I scored against Pittsburgh in the US Open Cup a few weeks ago so that was my first goal for the club, but it was great to open my account in the MLS last week.

“I was happy with the goal, I hit it first time and hit it cleanly. It was a good feeling but obviously it would have been better if I’d been able to celebrate. We were losing 3-0 at the time and went on to lose 5-1. Hopefully I’ll be able to go on and score more goals now.”

grant_instory  

The nature of our outing at Toyota Park on Saturday night meant Grant was able to play against some of his White Hart Lane colleagues – an experience he admitted was a strange but useful one.

And with a domestic home match against Vancouver Whitecaps coming up in midweek, he believes our friendly was an ideal opportunity for Fire to get the heavy defeat to San Jose out of their system.

“It was strange seeing the Spurs kit without actually being in it,” reflected Grant. “The match itself was a good opportunity for me, to be honest. It was a good battle and, although I was playing on the wing, I had a few little battles with Ryan Mason when we drifted towards each other so that was interesting.

“Everyone from Chicago enjoyed it and a few of the boys actually support Tottenham as well, so they were all excited to play against the Club.

“We’re all feeling confident now after the Tottenham game. We put in a good performance and hopefully now we can get back on track with a win against Vancouver on Wednesday to get ourselves up the table.”