Sheffield Steelers vs Glasgow Clan: Steelers must contain Mathieu Roy threat

Mathieu Roy must be given maximum attention when he plays against his old team, Sheffield Steelers, on Wednesday night.

Tuesday, 21st December 2021, 11:11 am

The French Canadian is Glasgow Clan's top scorer with 15 points in 13 games.

Sheffield fans will remember him for putting his body on the line in 273 matches for their club.

It looked like the 35-year-old had retired at one point, but he is back in the EIHL putting up the numbers.

Steelers' coach Aaron Fox says: "He is one of those guys that you have to be really aware of around the net, so good on the power play and so good from the hash marks down.

"He might have needed the re-set he had - he played during the lock out (US team; Knoxville Ice Bears,) that was good to see.

"Some guys took that 2019-20 year off he just took the year before off."

Fox knows his defencemen will have to be on the look out for Clan's second top scorer, the memorably named Colton Yellow Horn, who grew up among the Piikani Nation tribe of Brocket, Alberta.

Former Steeler Mathieu Roy.

"I have known his game from the Austrian league, (Graz99ers) he was a really, really good player over there," said Fox.

The Sheffield coach said it would be good to play against a team they had not faced for a while.

He said he and his staff had not wanted to analyse video from Saturday's Manchester v Clan game, (Storm won 4-2) on a small rink, but was closely examining the Cardiff game on Sunday (Devils won 5-2.)

Fox has a difficult decision to make over goaltending for the midweek match.

Mathieu Roy is now playing for Glasgow Clan.

Barry Brust was "excellent" in last weekend's game at Cardiff, he observed.

But Rok Stojanovic still tops the league with his save percentage and goals-against average.

"When both of them are playing as good as they are right now there is always going to be a hard decision to make there," said Fox.

"We ran Barry's last few games, dating back to that Coventry Blaze loss in late October and he didn't give up many goals, he's had a pretty good run of numbers.

Barry Brust beaten at Cardiff; pic James Assinder.

"Rok had been so good on the road but I wanted to get Barry back in there at Cardiff and he played well.

"Barry kept us in the game when we weren't very good and there was not much you could fault him on, to be fair. He made some huge saves."

Steelers' lead at the top of the division was cut to four points after last weekend.

Second place Cardiff have played one more game, though.

Glasgow are third from the bottom of the league with 11 points from 13 games.

Cardiff Devils say they "understand and acknowledge" Welsh Government instructions to play behind closed doors for the two home games over the holiday period (December 27 and January 1).

Steelers badly need the income from their big Boxing Day game - and will be keeping their fingers crossed no new Covid restrictions come in before then.