“He’s got thunder in his boot.” That’s the description of Dundee derby goalscorer Faissal El Bakhtaoui from his manager, Neil McCann.
The former-Dunfermline marksman lit up Wednesday’s Betfred Cup derby victory with an impressive performance, capped up an explosive opening goal.
Despite missing an earlier easier chance, the French-Moroccan turned on the ball on the edge of the area and unleashed an unstoppable volley that crashed in off the crossbar on 30 minutes to set his team on their way to a 2-1 victory.
Take a bow Faissal El Bakhtaoui! ?
A stunning strike to break the deadlock in the Dundee Derby. ? pic.twitter.com/MoVKfht4Jg
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) August 9, 2017
It’s not the first time El Bakhtaoui has rattled in a spectacular goal — and his manager insists it won’t be the last.
Neil said: “I’m delighted for Faissal because having brought him to Dunfermline, I’ve seen him grow in terms of football knowledge and he’s still learning.
“He’s got such a feathery touch when he gets into good positions and he’s fleet footed and can stretch defences.
“He’s got thunder in his boot.
“He used to play futsal with a denser ball and he’s got no backlift when shooting.
“He scored one like that against Buckie Thistle and I just want to keep on encouraging him that he’s got that in him and to believe in himself.
“It was an unbelievable finish.”
The Dark Blues were given the toughest of draws in the quarter-finals as reward for seeing off their city rivals with Celtic coming to Dens in the last eight.
However, Neil doesn’t want his side to go into that game feeling in any way inferior.
He’s urging his team to believe they can compete with anyone and everyone.
“What I want is for the boys to believe they can challenge this season in terms of being really competitive and having good cup runs,” he said.
“I want them to grasp things, to say ‘we don’t want a mediocre season, we want to be challenging’.
“If you don’t have those aspirations, you’ll end up coming short.”
The Dens gaffer is also keen to see the fans continue to get right behind their team, just like they did on Wednesday night.
“It was tangible, you could feel the energy coming from the stands.
“It helps when we go a goal up and gets them going but they enjoyed it.
“Not only was it a good victory but it was a real marker.”