Exeter City Lee Martin says his winning strike against Crewe Alexandra is right up there in terms of quality amongst the goals he has netted in his career.
Lee, who signed for the Grecians in the summer, did well to turn two defenders having picked up a ball from Lee Holmes and then arrowed a left-foot strike beyond Ben Garratt and into the top corner of the net.
“It ranks quite highly,” he said. “I seem to have to score the hard way. I have got a few long rangers, but I don’t tend to score tap-ins. I am working on that though.
“The ball slowed down on the pitch, so I just managed to shift it a little bit and I just swung the left foot at it.”
The conditions at St James Park were not the best, with the referee calling a pitch inspection an hour and a quarter before kick-off because of the heavy rainfall and surface water. However, the pitch passed the inspection, much to the delight of the two managers, even if Lee admitted it did make things difficult for the players.
“It was tough, especially down either flank first half because the ball was holding up,” said Lee. “You couldn’t really get any rhythm. The boys that were running for the crosses, would have to check back because the ball was slowing down. So, it was difficult but it was the same for both teams.”
City took the lead in the 42nd-minute of the match and had chances to put the game to bed in the second half before Shaun Miller rounded Grecians keeper Christy Pym four minutes of the match to go only to see his effort strike the crossbar. It was a stroke of luck for City that has perhaps deserted them during an eight-game winless run going into the match.
“You need a bit of luck,” said Lee. “We have had a bit of a tough spell. We have got good players though and we always knew we would come out of the other side.
“It is testament to the boys because they keep going and keep working hard in training. I wouldn’t have said it had been too down a place but we have been disappointed – as any professional would be – but we have stuck together and that is the main thing.”
It means City now go into a busy Christmas schedule with a bit of confidence, and Lee says that is important.
“For me, Christmas time every year is where you can make strides,” he said. “If you can pick up points on the road and win your home games and you can be right up there. You have seen today that we have gone back up to seventh. So we are right amongst it and considering we have been on an eight-game spell that we have we can’t be too disappointed.”