Youngster pleased to notch his first goal since going pro18-year-old forward Ollie Watkins was pleased to have his name scrawled onto the scoresheet as the Grecians beat Rio Cricket e Associação Atlética 3-1 in their final game in Brazil.
The youngster had a chance to score against Reading in the pre-season game at St James Park, but selflessly tried to set up Tom Nichols instead.
He also made an impression in the other two fixtures in Brazil; in particular he impact that he and David Wheeler made from the subs bench against Tupi was noteworthy.
So he was understandably pleased to notch his first goal for the club since signing a pro contract in the Grecians’ final game on tour.
“The centre-midfielder played a sloppy pass and I just intercepted it and ran on, and when the ‘keeper came out I slotted it past him,” explained Watkins.
“It’s good to get on the scoresheet – I’ve had a few chances this pre-season and it’s good to take one in the last game [in Brazil].”
The fixture wasn’t quite as intense as the previous two, but their Brazilian hosts still played in a typically South American fashion by keeping calm in possession and even taking the lead late in the first period.
But City fought back through Jimmy Keohane and Matt Jay, before Watkins sealed the win, and the front-man enjoyed the fixture and the ever-improving understanding that the team have.
“It was a good tempo,” he continued. “They were a bit older than us but they were so relaxed on the ball – much more relaxed than we were. In the second half we moved the ball better.
“In the first half we had quite a few chances – I had one where I tried chipping the ‘keeper when I should have hit it with a bit of power.
“But apart from that we moved the ball well, and we’re getting used to teams passing the ball well and working well together as a team.”