Midfielder looks back on sharing the points with LutonExeter City midfielder Matt Grimes was disappointed that the Grecians couldn’t take all three points from a home tie against Luton Town, but felt that that was a sign of the high standards and buoyant level of confidence in the City camp.
It ended 1-1 as Scott Griffiths’ third-minute header from an Adam Drury corner gave the Hatters the lead, and that advantage was eventually reined in with a Tom Nichols penalty 20 minutes from time, after Exeter had threatened Mark Tyler’s goal time and again.
Matt felt that the fact that they were left feeling hard done by to have only secured a draw against a team that hadn’t dropped a point in seven games was a sign of how much ability this Grecians team has.
He also felt that if Luton hadn’t had something to hold onto from their early goal, it might have been a different result in City’s favour.
“To be disappointed with a point against the league leaders says it all,” Matt said. “Confidence is flying high in the camp and we’re looking forward to pushing on in the FA Cup next week and then Newport the week after. We’re all really looking forward to getting through the games and picking up as many points as we can.
“A lot of the lads were saying after the game that last season when we went a goal down, we never felt like we were going to make a come-back. This year, whenever we go a goal down we always feel like we can score. Unfortunately we couldn’t get the win but we’re happy with a point.
“It was a good set-piece [from Luton], but we’re disappointed to concede from it. We did a lot of work on it on the training ground the day before but it’s one you’ve got to look at and learn from.
“You saw how we came back after that – and imagine if we hadn’t conceded the set-piece early on. It would have been a completely different game and one I feel we would have absolutely wiped the floor with.”
Tom Nichols’ penalty kept up the Grecians’ scoring record of netting in every game since Northampton Town shut them out at Sixfields in August. No team has yet kept Exeter at bay at home in League 2 yet so far this season either.
Grimes commended the coolness of striker Nichols – whose first touch of the ball was to slot in a penalty from 12 yards after Christian Ribeiro had been brought down in the area – as well as revealing that City are full of belief that goals will come this season.
“Tom is a class penalty taker,” Grimes said. “He practices them in training and he’s got a very cool head. I saw the fans giving him a lot of grief behind the goal, but nothing like that affects him. He just gets the job done so really well done to him.
“We believe as a team that we’re always going to score. If we go a goal down or even two down, we know that we can score goals to get us back in the game. That shows on the pitch.”
With a crowd of 5,400 jammed into St James Park, it also made for good viewing for the St James Park faithful, albeit with the result not quite what they desired.
He felt that having great backing from the supporters was a great feeling, and one well deserved after a superb team effort.
“The fans could see how well we played and the amount of football we played and how much we battered the opposition,” he continued. “I think that shows in the crowd and their spirit, and that lifts them.
“It’s a lot different if it’s a 1-1 draw when you’re penned back and can’t get out your own half. Then they would be reacting differently.
“But the way we played today I thought was outstanding. Every one of the lads were class, and that shows when the fans give us a standing ovation at the end of the game.
“The more fans that get behind us, the more confident we feel on top of the confidence that we’re getting from results and playing so well. Every little helps.”