Hoolahan delighted at scoring first
Wes Hoolahan broke his scoring duck for City on Saturday - even if Bryan Gunn hadn't expected to see him pop up on the right. Hoolahan got City off the mark 10 minutes into the second half - 10 minutes after Gunn had warned him not to stray too far to the right as he tried to get his players to retain their shape.
Wes Hoolahan broke his scoring duck for City on Saturday - even if Bryan Gunn hadn't expected to see him pop up on the right.
Hoolahan got City off the mark 10 minutes into the second half - 10 minutes after Gunn had warned him not to stray too far to the right as he tried to get his players to retain their shape.
If that was a surprise it was nothing compared to the way the predominantly left-footed Hoolahan tucked the ball away.
“If you had a pound on to Wes Hoolahan to score with his right foot you'd have won a fortune,” reflected Gunn.
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“Wes has that little bit of magic in him. The area of the pitch he played in today suited him, well protected by Mark Fotheringham and Sammy Clingan and he kept drifting over in the first half to the right-hand side so we just asked him to try and keep the shape a little better in the second.
“He didn't listen so he started drifting over to the right side again and scored a goal - who am I to criticise him?”
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It was Hoolahan's first goal for City since his summer move from Blackpool - and his first December 22, 2007 - and owed much to Darel Russell's ability to hold off a defender, turn and feed the Irishman to round keeper Heinz Muller and roll it in.
“I'm delighted, over the moon - is it that long?” he said. “I'd better start scoring now.
“It was a great turn by Rusty and I just went through the middle and he played me through and I just went round the keeper and right foot, in.
“That's unusual, I think it's my first as well.”
Hoolahan's goal brought a huge road from the crowd - even if some in the Barclay Stand mistook him for Jamie Cureton - and he received a standing ovation when his afternoon's work was deemed over 10 minutes from time.
“I thought the crowd were great from the word go and when we got the first goal we kind of relaxed a bit and played our football and I think we were great to watch out there as well,” hew added.
“Gunny just said go out express yourself, you don't need to worry, there's togetherness in the team - just work hard for each other and it's a chance now to move up the table and we did that.
“It's been a difficult season, I don't think we have reached the standards we were supposed to and hopefully now this will be our turn to reach those standards.”
The burning question surrounds Gunn and whether he has the credentials to be the next City manager.
“Bryan is a great man and great to have around the training ground,” he said. “He's full of laughter and jokes and he keeps the players relaxed and makes them relaxed.
“It's up to the board and the people upstairs.”