Striker Sutherland keen to take Pilgrims chance
NEW signing Craig Sutherland is relishing the opportunity of making his Plymouth Argyle debut in the League Two derby at Torquay tomorrow (3pm).
The Edinburgh-born striker has joined manager Carl Fletcher's Pilgrims on loan from Championship Blackpool until the end of January.
The 23-year-old becomes the second player from Ian Holloway's Blackpool that Fletcher has borrowed, after right-back Paul Bignot joined the Pilgrims earlier this month.
Sutherland is excited to be on the books at Blackpool after persuading Holloway to take a chance on him and even more upbeat over being given a chance to fast-track his career at Plymouth.
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The Scot, who has spent the past four years living and studying in the United States, has come to Home Park, via Bloomfield Road, with a reputation of having pace and mobility.
At some point tomorrow in south Devon, the confident Sutherland will look to put those qualities into practice.
He said: "I play up top or out wide and I'm fast and like to get in behind defences and create opportunities for myself.
"To get a few goals, that's the target I've set for myself.
"I'm excited to be able to play – the guys tell me it's a big game and the ground is sold out.
"Everyone's said the fans here in Plymouth are great."
Sutherland knows his lack of English league experience means he is down the pecking order with the Seasiders.
Therefore, Sutherland accepts he has to gain game-time out on loan to get the necessary experience.
Sutherland only learned he would be swapping one seaside resort for another on Tuesday.
He said: "I'd spoken to the gaffer about going out on loan and I was just waiting for him to find me somewhere.
"Genuinely, it was just three days ago the gaffer came up to me and said, 'Get yourself down to Plymouth'.
"I said yes straight away and drove down the next day.
"Plymouth are a good club and a big club, looking to improve and I'm trying to get games and, hopefully, help them out.
"I was not hesitant at all.
"Yes, Plymouth is far away from where I was but that doesn't really bother me: I just packed my bags and got here."
Sutherland joined Blackpool from North Carolina State University after spending four years in the United States.
He had sent off DVDs of himself to Holloway which persuaded the Seasiders manager to award him his first professional contract.
Thus, Sutherland is sufficiently street-savvy not to be fazed if he is pitched into action at Plainmoor tomorrow.
"I just got lucky (with Blackpool)," said Sutherland, who has made three starts and five substitute appearances for the Tangerines this term.
"If you tot up the minutes, then I'll have played about four matches in total, but it's been a great experience and I've really enjoyed it.
"Blackpool have brought in some experienced players who know the English game a little bit better than me.
"The gaffer is happy with the way I'm playing, and just wants me to get some more experience.
"He said if he could buy me 40 games then he would, but this is something I have to do myself."
Sutherland added that defender Bignot's impressions of life at Home Park had been positive and meeting up with a familiar face would be mutually beneficial.
"Biggie is a good player and like me he's looking to get games.
"He said it was really good down here and that the team has been playing well, but unlucky."