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INTERVIEW: My eyes lit up

Tom Parkes on his first goal for the club at Cambridge

14 August 2017

We spoke to defender Tom Parkes shortly after full time on Saturday after he bagged the winner and his first goal for the club in the 2-1 victory over Cambridge.

“I thought the boys were brilliant today,” he said. “We knew it was going to be difficult coming to a place like this but we dug in. There was a lot of football off the ground - we want to try and play football but sometimes when the game isn’t going that way you’ve got to adjust. We did that and the best thing about it is that we came away with three points.

“During the first 20-25 minutes of the game we did what we wanted to do by getting in behind them and putting them on the back foot. It worked and Reggie [Lambe] got the goal to put us in the lead. That first period of the game was good for us because we put pressure on them."

“It was disappointing to concede the penalty, but these things can happen," he admitted. "It’s a difficult decision when things are going so quickly but I personally thought it was a foul on the keeper to start with. We all know we’ve got to carry on until the whistle is blown and you’ve just got to get on with it. The good thing was that we bounced back and got that second goal.

Luckily it fell to me and it was nice to see it hit the back of the net ...

Tom Parkes

“My eyes lit up when the ball fell to me in the box. It was a great header from Tom [Miller], similar to what he did at Fleetwood where he got up at the back post and won it well. The keeper pulled off a great save and luckily enough it hit the post and landed right at my feet. I just wanted to make sure I put it in to put us back in front."

On his defensive partnership with Mark Ellis, he said: “I think I’m building up a good relationship with Mark, but it isn’t just us two. Danny Grainger and Tom Miller put a shift in as well as everybody else on the pitch.

"We had to dig in, especially in the last 15 minutes, because they were putting the ball into the box a lot. We had to defend that but I thought we showed our character. If we have to have a fight with a team in that sort of situation we’ve shown we're up for it. It paid off today and as a whole squad we're really pleased with that."

“The three points were important," he said. "We spoke last week and we were disappointed with the Swindon game because we felt as if we deserved more. We didn’t get anything out of the game but we bounced back well on Tuesday and got a good win.

"That brought a lot of confidence, as will the result today, and hopefully we can take that into the Cheltenham game."

And on the incident in front of the dug-outs, where he appeared to take a knock to the back of the head when he fell to the floor, he said: “I felt like I’d got the free kick which was why I maybe handled it.

"It all happened so quickly, but the referee didn’t punish me. With their lad standing on my head, I don’t think he meant to do that, it was just one of those things ... but he did nearly break my neck!"

“We’ve had a good overall first week," he concluded. "The first game was disappointing but we’ve worked hard after that and built on it.

"We’ve had two good positive results away from home and we just want to carry that on now.”

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