Thursday, March 23, 2017

Roofe hoping to emulate late-bloomer Vardy

SoccerNews in FA Cup 11 Jan 2016

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Oxford United hero Kemar Roofe is determined to return to the Premier League, with the high-flying striker looking to follow in the footsteps of Leicester City star Jamie Vardy.

Former West Brom frontman Roofe is the name on everyone’s lips after his two goals lifted League Two side Oxford to a shock 3-2 win over Swansea City in the FA Cup third round on Sunday.

The 23-year-old never made a senior appearance at The Hawthorns as he was loaned out to Iceland’s Vikingur Reykjavik, Northampton Town, Cheltenham Town, Colchester United and Oxford, where his stay was made permanent last year.

But Roofe is now reportedly attracting the attention of Premier League outfit Newcastle United, and while Oxford coach Michael Appleton is desperate not to sell in the club’s promotion push, the player wants another opportunity in the top flight.

“Jamie Vardy started lower and he’s got the record of scoring in the Premier League. It can be done given the time and given the chance,” Roofe said.

“I’ve been given a chance to put in a fair amount of games and been able to show what I can actually do. It’s hard to show people what you can do with spells on loan. Ask anybody.

“This was the best team I have ever played against and it has got to be my best performance.

“In League Two, you don’t play the Premier League boys very often. And scoring two goals and winning the game. When you are around Premier League players you up your performance.”

Roofe added: “I never got a chance at West Brom. I put in the performances in the Under-21s and trained hard but just didn’t get the chance.

“I got on the bench but never got a few minutes. I believe I should have had a chance.

“I did as much as I could. It’s down to being given a chance and giving the young players the ­opportunity.”

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