STUART McCall says the move to take Josh Morris, now League One’s joint deadliest marksman, from Bradford City to Scunthorpe United was all but done by the time he returned to Valley Parade as manager in early summer.
Morris has netted 15 goals and provided 11 assists for the Iron this season since joining on a free transfer.
It represents a dramatic change of fortune for the 25-year-old, whose 12 months at Bradford were unconvincing.
“I didn’t know enough about him,” said McCall when asked by The Yorkshire Post if he had made any attempts to keep Morris at Valley Parade following his appointment.
“I’d seen him play just once for Blackburn so couldn’t give an accurate assessment.
“He had been released before I arrived and was well down the line with a deal to join a new club.
“Basically, there was a player who wanted to move and was well on his way to doing just that.
“Plus, he would have been one of the highest earners at the club due to the second year of his contract kicking in.
“These things happen and he has done brilliantly well.
“He is certainly one of the players we will have to keep an eye on.”
Scunthorpe spent Christmas looking down on the rest of League One, three points ahead of nearest rivals Sheffield United and 10 in front of Bradford in fourth place.
“This is a great game to look forward to,” added McCall.
“People ask if I am surprised at Scunthorpe doing so well, but I am not. Maybe I didn’t expect their points total to be so big, but they finished last season really well and have a good manager.”
Last six games: Bradford City WLWLDD Scunthorpe United WWDDLW.
Referee: D Handley (Lancashire).
Last time: Bradford City 1 Scunthorpe United 0; April 2, 2016; League One.