Jan 24 2014 by Nick Hilton, Main WIR
JAKE CASSIDY is back with Tranmere for a third loan spell because he believes a return to Prenton Park offers him the best chance of regaining some lost confidence and goal-scoring touch.
The 20-year-old striker is due to complete the formalities of a three-month arrangement with Wolverhampton Wanderers today and is lined up to play in the League One encounter with Crewe Alexandra tomorrow afternoon.
Cassidy said he had the options to go elsewhere after Wolves manager Kenny Jackett decided his development would be best served by spending time away from Molineux, where he has not found the net in 18 games this season.
But his first choice was to return to Prenton Park, where he tasted League One football for the first time towards the end of the 2011-12 campaign and in a second loan, contributed 11 goals to Tranmere’s surge to the top of the table during the first half of last season.
Cassidy said: “I’m delighted to be back here. Quite a few clubs wanted to take me on loan but when I heard Tranmere were looking to take me back I wanted to come here.
“I know a lot of the players and I know the club. The fans know me and the gaffer and (coach) John McMahon know what I’m about.”
Cassidy’s last senior goal was scored in a Tranmere shirt, in a 1-1 draw at Stevenage in late November, 2012.
Little more than a month later he was recalled by Wolves, then a Championship club heading for a second relegation in two seasons.
Cassidy has gained strength and experience in his time away from Prenton Park, working alongside strikers who cost seven figure sums in the transfer market.
But in spite of Jackett keeping faith with Cassidy’s potential, the goals remained elusive.
“It’s no secret I wasn’t enjoying my time at Wolves,” Cassidy said.
“My confidence was low and confidence is the key to scoring goals. Hopefully coming back here will boost my confidence and I will get some goals. I do feel comfortable here. I came in on Monday morning and I felt like I had never been away. It brings your confidence back when all the lads are welcoming you.
“I have not had a long chat with Ronnie Moore yet but I think it is obvious what he wants me to come and do, get some goals.”
Cassidy hopes he can help Tranmere make history repeat itself over the coming months. He points out that while he was a member of a successful Rovers team last season, when he first arrived Prenton Park as a raw teenager in March 2012, the team were at the wrong end of the table as they are now and facing the threat of relegation.
Cassidy contributed five goals in 10 games to a strong recovery that saw Tranmere finish mid-table. Now Moore and his team are facing another survival fight. They go into the Crewe game lying third from bottom of the table, although they have 20 games left to play.
Cassidy said: “I remember my first loan spell here. Tranmere were in a similar situation to now when I arrived. We kicked on that year and I think we finished in the top half.
“I don’t think it matters Tranmere are near the bottom at the moment because there are a lot of games left to play. I know a lot of the players here and I think there is more than enough quality in the squad to get the job done.
“I played against Tranmere for Wolves in the game here on New Year’s Day. Tranmere played well that day. There were a lot of signs they can mix it with the best teams in the league. I think we can push on and get ourselves clear of relegation by the end of the season.
“We won’t get relegated – no chance! There’s too much quality in the dressing room.”
Cassidy is looking forward to forging an attacking partnership with Ryan Lowe, who scored 14 League One goals this season and 15 overall.
“It will be good to see how we can work together,” Cassidy said.
“I’m sure I can pick up stuff from Ryan.
“He has vast experience and is a goalscorer. I will take bits out of his game and try to apply them to mine. I think he can help me a lot.”