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Sports star of the week: Josh McMenamin

Josh McMenamin in discussion with referee Lindsay Wright. PHOTO/JADE CVETKOV

Football is in Josh McMenamin’s Scottish blood, and sometimes that passion spills on to the football field. CHRIS COGDALE spoke to the in-form Douglas Villa Magpies striker.

Football has always played a big part in Josh McMenamin’s life, being born to his Scottish mother shortly after her arrival in New Zealand.

“Being Scottish, we love football, and we live and breathe football, and football saved me from a lot of things and a lot of bad things too, so I guess you could say it’s my passion,” McMenamin said.

The 25-year-old apprentice builder started playing as a child and progressed through the age groups. He played for Kuranui College in Greytown, before going to Wairarapa College in Year 12 and 13 to develop his football.

There were also stints in the Wairarapa United Under-17 side, a debut in the club’s Central League team at the age of 15, and a regular spot in the Heartland team in the national youth league before he switched to Douglas Villa four years ago.

The Magpies have since won promotion in three consecutive seasons, and although they are sitting just above the relegation zone, McMenamin said the team are good enough to make the top three in division two.

He also has some high ambitions for the team in the coming years.

“A dream of mine is to take Douglas Villa to the Central League, but I think Capital Premier is definitely a goal of ours, and I think it’s achievable.”

McMenamin said the arrival of good mate and former Central League player Chris Cox at the club is a big boost, with the pair resuming their combination going back to their junior playing days.

There’s no doubt McMenamin possesses an uncanny knack for finding the back of the net, with eight goals in their 10 games, including two outstanding strikes in Saturday’s 4-2 win over Petone Thirds, but he admits that sometimes his fiery temperament gets the better of him.

He was also the Magpies’ top goal-scorer in 2021, however, his season was blighted with red cards, and he spent six weeks suspended.

“I thought to myself in those six games I could have scored a lot of goals,” he said.

“That’s something I’ve been trying to cut out of my game this year and take a bit more of a senior role and leadership role.”

He said the attitude change is working well, and he’s even getting positive comments from referees.

Away from football, McMenamin loves to spend time with fiancee Talia and their two-year-old daughter Alaya.

He is also a passionate follower of Glasgow club Celtic and a long-suffering fan of Manchester United.

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