Dean Keates full of praise for Walsall hitman

Dean Keates has been talking up the virtues of striker Andy Cook after his successful transition to League One football.

The former Tranmere man joined in the summer, but has made the step up look frighteningly easy, bagging eight times in 23 matches for the Saddlers.

Keates, whose Wrexham side faced off against Cook in the National League, isn’t surprised at all the 28-year old has been a success at the Bescot Stadium.

“There is no doubt about it, he (Cook) is a player that consistently scores goals,” he told the Express and Star.

“He has done that over the last few years in the National League. And you never forget where the net is, he knows that. From day one he has been excellent. He has worked on bits and pieces. He has done a lot of work with Nick (Barnett) our sports scientist – his body fat has gone down.”

“He has bought into everything we have asked from him. I can’t praise the lad enough.”

Cook started his career at Carlisle United, but most of his football came in the fifth tier with Barrow, Grimsby and Tranmere, the last of whom he helped to the Football League last season.

Our View

Cook is a decent striker, but the difference between the top of the National League and League One isn’t all that great in some respects. Whole teams might not do well, but the very best players in the NL could easily settle into most L1 teams.

Quite often the difference is fitness, which Cook has made sure isn’t an issue for him.



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