On-loan Watford midfielder scores fine long range drive in 4-0 Johnstone’s Paint Trophy quarter-final victory over Blackpool.
- First goal in just under two years for Murray.
- Midfielder impresses on just his third Latics start.
- 22-year-old hoping to hold down first team place.
Murray, a former Republic of Ireland youth international who joined Latics on loan from Watford in August, was handed his third Latics start by Gary Caldwell for the victory over the Tangerines and he rewarded his manager with a superb goal.
“I think it has been a long time in coming,” Murray said of his goal. “I haven’t scored a goal in over a year so I am happy to be back on the score-sheet and hopefully I can push on from here.
“I was screaming for Andy Kellett to pass me the ball, he’s not a greedy player so I knew it was going to come and luckily I’ve hit it well and it has gone in the top corner.”
Murray’s initial delight on the evening will have come from seeing his name in the starting XI, a sight he has only seen once before in his time with Latics.
And the midfielder was pleased to grasp the opportunity afforded to him.
“I think the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy obviously provides a chance for the players that haven’t really been playing to really prove themselves,” he explained. “There was a bit of pressure before the game but everyone here believes they are a good player and I think everyone knows we can win games.
“I think for a few of the boys in the first-half, because we haven’t played in a while, it took a while to get their legs going but that was always how it was going to be. We have been working hard off the pitch, though, so we’re ready and personally I think I had an OK performance, not my best, but it was good to get some minutes.”
A number of players pressed claims for a starting place in Saturday’s Sky Bet League One trip to Rochdale with impressive performances against Blackpool, and Murray was pleased that both he and some of his teammates took their chance.
“I think we gave the manager a hard decision for Rochdale on Saturday because everyone played really well,” Murray continued. “Places are up for grabs, and the players that featured against Blackpool showed they’re worthy of being in the team.”