David Weir believes midfielder Kevin McDonald can wreak havoc among League One defences this season after admitting he was stunned the former Scotland under-21 international scored only once last term.
Having been criticised for his meagre contribution in front of goal in 2012-13, McDonald found the back of the net after only 30 minutes of Friday’s victory over Notts County.
And Weir, who has increased his attacking responsibilities since taking charge of United in June, told The Star there is even more to come from the 24-year-old.
“Kevin has got so much to offer,” he told The Star. “Because of what he can give I found it unbelievable he scored only one goal last season.
“It was great to see him get off the mark because we’ve been preaching to him about doing exactly that for the past few weeks.
“Kevin has set his standards very high and his challenge is to keep on adhering to those.”
Weir, who saw Harry Maguire ensure his managerial career got off to the perfect start following Enoch Showunmi’s equaliser for County, acknowledged United had missed numerous
opportunities to increase their margin of victory.
But he explained: “Being honest, we’ve not worked on finishing yet.
“That might sound stupid but we’ve been so preoccupied on other aspects of our game and we thought instilling those fundamentals, the way we want to pass the ball and positioning,
was more important at this stage.
“So we’ll sharpen up as the season goes along.”
Febian Brandy, one of four players handed their United debut by Weir against County, terrorised the visitors’ defence.
“Febian is fast and tricky,” Weir, whose side entertain Burton Albion in the Capital One Cup tomorrow, said. “He makes things happen.
“But he’s also a team player. You see him getting dirty on the ground, tracking back and doing his bit.
“We can’t afford luxury players. That’s not what we want or are about.
“But Febian isn’t one of those. He isn’t like that.”