David Moyo was likely on top of the world as his performance helped inspire a Hamilton derby win. It’s something he’s worked extremely hard for since his move north to South Lanarkshire.
Waiting patiently in the wings for his Accies chance, Moyo showed Brian Rice and all those present at Fir Park during a 2-1 Accies win over Motherwell what he was capable of. A goal and an assist capped off a brilliant day.
— Hamilton Accies FC (@acciesfc) December 30, 2019
It’s not been easy, but Moyo finally has his name in lights.
Cairns could see potential from Reserve outings
Before his arrival in the SPFL, adventures in the lower reaches of English football was what Moyo had. He started at Northampton Town before making moves to the likes of Brackley and Hemel Hempstead Town, before a move to St Albans City.
In a match during the summer for Chorley, Moyo was spotted by Hamilton. Soon enough the striker was kitted out in red and white as a brand new journey awaited him.
Before his momentous Fir Park triumph, first-team goals and starts were limited. It meant that George Cairns’ flying Reserve League side is where Moyo’s minutes and goals came from.
He’s been lethal at that level too. On a few occasions he’s netted braces, including one against Hearts in a 3-2 win. Cairns said after this game that he hoped the forward could go onto big things in Rice’s senior squad.
“He was fantastic, he did really well last week scoring a couple of goals too,” Cairns said. “His header from the corner was great, so it was another good performance.
“Sometimes it takes a bit of time for a player to adjust. He’s coming up here from England, it’s a new club, a strange environment, a new area and it’s full-time football.
“But I think he’s done remarkably well. He works really hard in training and hopefully he can kick on and have a good career.”
Derby delight and how Rice plucked him from Chorley
He’s put in workmanlike shifts against the likes of Celtic but a goal at senior SPFL level alluded him. Rice handed him a chance in Lanarkshire’s showpiece match as Moyo looked to end 2019 with a bang.
It wasn’t just a bang, he left Fir Park stunned with an explosive performance. In the air Moyo was a nuisance, leaving Bevis Mugabi and Declan Gallagher with a tough test on their hands.
George Oakley was giving him a real hand too as Accies grew into the match. They may have been 1-0 down at half time, but belief that victory could be achieved was there. It was shown in the second half.
Moyo almost scored a screamer. He took a bouncing ball down with ease, before lashing a spectacular effort goalward, only denied by a brilliant Mark Gillespie save. The forward managed to finally get his hand in on a goal shortly afterwards.
Winning yet another aerial battle, Moyo headed the ball down to Aaron McGowan, who blasted it past Gillespie. It was 1-1 and Moyo grabbed the headlines before the game was done.
As a ball soared into the backpost area, Moyo rose highest to send the 400+ Accies fans in the Fir Park South Stand wild. It secured a big three points for Accies in their quest for survival.
It left Rice thrilled at full time after finding Moyo in the depths of English football: “I’m absolutely delighted for David. I went down to England to watch a game when he was playing as a trialist for Chorley. I liked what I saw and thought I’d give him a wee chance.
“He can head the ball, he can jump and he works. He had a header just before scoring a magnificent one. Hats off to my boys, they were outstanding.”
Only way is up
It’s been a hard slog at times, but his Lanarkshire derby heroics must rank amongst the best of Moyo’s career so far. It was the perfect way to enter the winter break as Accies look to build on the brilliant result.
Looking like he’d just got off the first bus from cloud nine, Moyo bounced into the press room at Fir Park with a grin on his face. It clearly meant so much to him after waiting months for his big break.
— George Oakley (@George_Oakley23) December 29, 2019
“I’m buzzing, I glanced a header just wide so I just told myself that I had to bury the next one,” said Moyo. “I feel we had a bit more belief and we played to our strengths.
“On a personal note I want to keep getting goals and helping the team climb the league. It’s been a bit frustrating waiting for that goal. The longer I waited, doubt starts to creep in. Hopefully more come now.
“I never knew anything about the SPFL apart from Celtic and Rangers. The opportunity came and I’ve now taken my chance, I’m delighted.”
His tail is up and Accies are beginning to look upwards themselves. A big few months beckon as they look to stay in the Premiership once more, but Moyo’s shown in Motherwell that he can potentially be the man to fire them up the way.
There’s a long way to go, but the signs in North Lanarkshire were certainly positive.