Shayon Harrison on first loan goal: 'My dad knew I'd score!'
28 March 2017|Tottenham Hotspur
Striker Shayon Harrison was thrilled to celebrate his first ever league goal in front of his dad at the weekend – after a spooky premonition led the latter to the game.
The 19-year-old joined Yeovil Town on loan in January after an encouraging first half of the campaign which started with a goal in our pre-season victory over Inter Milan in Norway and then saw him make his senior debut away at Liverpool in the EFL Cup.
Starting in League Two for only the second time following a series of appearances off the bench since his switch to south Somerset, the youngster headed home Yeovil’s second goal in an eventual 3-3 draw at Exeter City to open his competitive account on Saturday.
It was obviously a special moment, made even better by his father Ayo’s last-minute decision to travel to St James Park from his home in South London to watch it all unfold.
“My dad wasn’t going to come down but he said he had this feeling that I was going to score so he messaged me the night before and told me he was coming,” revealed Shayon.
“That was a really nice surprise and Matt Wells, one of the Under-23s coaches at Spurs, came all the way down to support me as well so I was really grateful and appreciative of that. Thankfully I could repay the favour!
“It was a big relief for me, getting my first goal. I knew that if I kept working hard in training and kept trying in the games, a chance would come eventually and thankfully it came on Saturday.”
Shayon, who wears the same squad number at Yeovil as he does at Spurs, 39, was substituted in the 77th minute of the game but looked on agonisingly as his side let slip a 3-0 lead in the dying moments and were forced to share the spoils. “It looked as if we were going to get the three points but this is football,” he reflected. “It’s very hard to take but all the lads know what we’ve got to do and how we’ve got to get better from that experience. It’s disappointing but we’re already looking forward to the next game against Carlisle next weekend.”
Shayon is the latest in a long line of Spurs players to have enjoyed loan spells at Yeovil over the years. The likes of Steven Caulker, Andros Townsend, Ryan Mason, Dean Parrett, Jon Obika and Christian Maghoma all spent temporary spells at Huish Park during their early years and Shayon believes his stay will benefit him greatly in the long-run.
“I was really looking forward to coming here,” he said. “I knew it was something that I’d need this early on in my career, to play men’s football. The ultimate goal is to play for Spurs and if I need to go out on loan in order to do that then I’m more than happy to do it. There have been players that have come from Spurs that have all had good times here in the past and I’ve spoken to a few of those lads. It was an easy decision to join and it’s one that I’m glad I made. In general, I think I’ve had a good year so far. Going away with the first team (at Spurs) was a fantastic experience and one that I won’t forget, then coming out here on loan – a different experience, playing men’s football – has helped me a lot, not only on the pitch but off it as well.”
Indeed, Shayon says he’s learning a lot of life lessons away from the capital, where he’s spent his entire footballing life. “I share a house with three other Yeovil players – Tom James, Bevis Mugabe and Jonny Maddison,” he explained. “I’ve got a good relationship with all three of them and there’s a good bit of banter in the house as well, which is always nice! We all cook for ourselves, we’ve all got little time slots so nothing’s really a problem on that side of things and I’ve been out with a few of the lads to the cinema as well, watching games sometimes too. In general we all get along as a squad so it was really comfortable and easy for me to settle in early on and I think that’s played a big part in me as a Yeovil player.
“It’s definitely a big change in footballing terms. Compared to Under-23s football it’s more physical, more intense on the pitch but it’s something that I needed in my career and I’m really happy with how things are going at the moment. Hopefully I can score a few more goals now that I’m off the mark.”