Joe McKee on his Carlisle United debut at DerbyWe spoke to midfielder Joe McKee shortly after full time at the iPro Stadium on Tuesday evening.
"I'm obviously happy to make my debut but I'm gutted with the way it ended," he said. "I don't even know what the score was after the penalties, but I couldn't believe it came back round to me. I didn't change my mind, I went for the same corner, but the goalkeeper made a decent save.
"I was gutted because the fans were great and the boys played really well. I'm not happy about the second penalty but the boys have been fantastic with me. Everybody is in it together and they all spoke to me in the dressing room. From a personal point of view I'm absolutely gutted that it's the way it had to finish.
"It's done now so I'll just dust myself down and go again. We'll go away and regroup then look to get a result at Barnet on Saturday.
"I was looking at it and when I was sitting on the bench during the first half some of the football we were playing was excellent. At one point there were 50 or 60 passes before we got a good cross into the box. That wold have been goal of the season if it had gone in."
On the performance on the night, he said: "Derby are a good Championship side who are always up there challenging. They were always going to put pressure on us, especially at home. I thought the lads were outstanding. Everybody gave everything they had and I thought we were very unfortunate not to go through in the end.
"It was nice for me to get minutes under my belt. I was suspended for the first game of the season and the boys have been excellent since then. The performance levels have been high and we still haven't lost a game in 90 minutes. When everyone is playing this well you just have to bide your time.
"I've been working as hard as I can to try and keep as fit as I can because I've been desperate to play. When the gaffer threw me on I just tried to work as hard as I could and give everything I had in the tank. I was delighted to get the minutes under my belt but, as I say, I'm gutted about the result because I thought the performance was outstanding."
"I've been trying to show the manager I'm ready in every training session," he admitted. "Every day I come in and work as hard as I can and try to perform well. The boys have been getting minutes on the pitch and getting sharper, so for me it's just about trying to get that sharpness up there.
"There's a lot more to come from me personally. Hopefully if I can keep working hard and doing well for the team I can keep getting minutes under my belt. If I can do that I'll get sharper, fitter, bigger and stronger. and I'll progress.
"The Derby game is definitely up there in terms of the stadiums I've played at. It just shows we've got the players to go and perform at that level, Carlisle are a big club and there's no reason why we can't be up there playing teams like this every week.
"We'll keep taking each game as it comes and keep trying to pick up points. We're undefeated in the league so we'll keep going and try to get another three points at Barnet."