Richard: The Time Has Come

Richard Garcia knows that this season is almost certainly his final opportunity to secure a long term future at the club - and he is hoping to show Alan Pardew he can do just that.

Richard is restored to the squad for the trip to White Hart Lane and, in the absence of David Connolly, hopes he can make an impression one way or another.

"It is a fresh start for everybody, a chance to get a good look-in for guys like myself who have not been getting in the team," he says.

"I feel I am coming on slowly; wherever you go there are players ahead of you but I have been patient.

"I haven't been allowed to go elsewhere so I haven't had a chance to see the other side of things because we haven't got a big enough squad.

"We saw that with Jermain and David being suspended and now David is injured so I don't think I will get that chance.

"If I am not going to get a go here this season I am sure I will be able to go somewhere else and offer my services because I think I can do it, especially in division one - but if I can play week in week out here I would be happy to stay."

Alan Pardew is the fourth manager, in effect, he has worked under, and Richard says:

"Everything was quite calm though there was anticipation about his arrival.

"Trevor had a lot to do with the run we have been having and when you are playing well things are calm."

"He has agreed that advice to stop moving positions from midfield to up front is valid, and he adds:

"I thought I would just stick to one position; I spoke to Trevor and, earlier in the season, Glenn Roeder, and we agreed it was best stay with being a striker and see how things go up there.

"The boys up front have been doing well but competition is good and if they have a rough patch I will be there to cover the spot."

His last start was against Norwich at home when he was denied the chance to score from four yards out by an own goal.

"Mellors just put in the cross and if their defender had missed it, it would have been me there to score it," he recalls.

"It is always good to come in and score as a striker but unfortunately it wasn't to be; I have played a few games in the reserves with Neil so it was fine.

"The game wasn't too bad; we started off well though it went a bit wrong in the second half."

Richard's other start this season was on the first day of the season at Preston and he has also featured on the bench seven times.