Dundee United star Illmari Niskanen is just getting sarted at Tannadice after a red-tape delayed move over the summer from German side FC Ingolstadt but Terrors boss Thomas Courts is excited by what he’s seen so far from the Finn.
Niskanen grabbed an assist against Celtic and scored his first goal for Dundee United in the 1-0 win over Ross County to leave fans purring, and Courts thinks there is plenty more to come.
Courts admits that Niskanen “probably wants to make up for lost time” after struggling for regular games in Germany as he insisted the Finland international “fits in perfectly” at Tannadice.
“We have started to see glimpses of what is to come,” Courts said.
“The great thing about Ilmari, like most of our players, there is a willingness to get better and an openness to new ideas.
“He probably wants to make up for lost time because he went to Germany and probably found himself in and out of the team.
“He didn’t play as much as he wanted so there is a strong buy-in desire in that player and we are lucky to have him because he fits in perfectly how we want him to play.”
Niskanen is currently away with the Finland squad ahead of their double-header with Ukraine and Kazakhstan over the coming week and Courts is delighted to see him get recognition at international level.
With the chance to do something a bit different with Finland, Courts admits he can go away “with a smile on his face” and make the most of his time with his national team.
“It is brilliant for him (being called up),” he added.
“The role they ask him to play is slightly different to what we ask of him here. They play a 5-3-2. At times he plays more as a wing-back
“He has worked hard through the work permit process, having to go back to Finland and then coming back across so things have been quite disruptive.
“I think he is the sort of guy who likes a bit of stability.
“Having an assist at Celtic Park last month for Ian Harkes’ goal will also have done him a power of good in his integration into the team.
“He can go away with a smile on his face and really enjoy being back in the international squad.”
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