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INTERVIEW: A goal so early in the game settles you down

Hallam Hope on his goals against Gillingham

21 December 2017

We spoke to striker Hallam Hope shortly after full time on Tuesday night as he bagged his eighth and ninth goals of the season against Gillingham in the Emirates FA Cup Second Round Replay at Brunton Park.

“It was a really good team performance tonight and it was important for us to bounce back after Saturday,” he said. “We stuck together through the whole game and put in a good performance.

“I’m obviously pleased on a personal note to get the two goals, but I wanted the hat-trick. I thought I’d scored when I hit the post as well, which would have been nice, but I’ll hopefully get one in another game."

“A goal so early in the game does settle you down, because that’s what all strikers want," he continued. "We work hard in training to get the shots on target, and things like that, so it was nice to see two of them go in today.

“The lead up to the first goal was good football and we know we’re capable of that as a team. We always try it in every game, but when we get it right and it comes off like it did tonight it’s a great feeling.

“Richie [Bennett’s] assist for the second goal is something we’ve been working on together. We want to get that partnership where we’re providing goals for each other, so it was nice to see that come together as well. I got away from the defender and from there I knew I just had to guide the ball into the back of the net and use the pace on the cross.

“It’s the first time I’ve scored two goals for this club and it’s something I want to keep on doing. As long as I’m helping the team I’m happy."

Speaking about the scare United received when the Gills scored so soon after the half time break, he told us: “At half time we said we needed to keep it tight for the first part of the second half, so for them to get that was a blow.

"That can happen in football. We dug in and stuck together and it was nice to go through in the end.

“We’ve played a good side and we got the result. They came here on the back of a 4-1 win so they were confident. We've got to take confidence from the fact we've beaten them.

"We were all disappointed after the game on Saturday so it was important for us to bounce back and get the win."

Next up for the Blues in the Emirates FA Cup is a third round meeting with Championship side Sheffield Wednesday.

“We’re looking forward to the next round because we seem to play well against the big teams and teams from higher leagues than us," he said. "We’re looking forward to the challenge but we know we’ve got some important games before then.

“We’ve talked about that in the dressing room after the game. We want to start climbing up the table now and get some consistency so we can get some more points on the board."

And with his personal tally now on nine for the campaign, has that changed his own thoughts on a final target?

“I’ve got nine goals so far this season and I’m targeting 20," he revealed. "I’d love to bang in a few more during the Christmas period to set it up for the second half of the season.”

Click HERE to watch an interview with Hallam Hope on iFollow United now.   

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