Midfielder also thankful for great reception from fans as he left the pitch
When you’ve been out of the side for a few games, you know when you get your chance in the team you have to take advantage of it.
That’s exactly what Anthony Straker did against Mansfield Town on Friday night, in rather unusual circumstances, as he scored in Blues’ excellent 3-0 win.
Straker may not have started the game had it not been for Cauley Woodrow being held up in serious traffic on the M25. But he did, and he opened the scoring from Kevan Hurst’s excellent cross.
The winger said: “It is frustrating being out of the side but when that chance or opportunity presents itself you have to take it and thankfully I think I did that tonight.”
The 25-year-old was also thrilled with the reaction he received as he walked off the pitch after being substituted for Marc Laird late on.
He said: “That was really nice. All the hard work we put in is for the fans. We want to win for them mainly because they are a fantastic set of supporters.
“The manager said to me to just listen to the reaction and it was great so I can’t thank the fans enough for that.”
Straker was also delighted to see hard work on the training pitch pay off for his first goal. He added: “We have had it drilled into us in recent weeks about coming in at the back post for crosses.
“It was nice to see it pay off tonight because it means we’re seeing the rewards of working hard on the training pitch and that’s great.”
The winger almost scored a second, but he admits it was a cross. “It was a cross,” he added. “I’m not going to lie about that but it almost went in. I was just pleased to get on the scoresheet and the team to win.
“It was the perfect response to Saturday’s defeat to Newport County and now we can go into the FA Cup game against Morecambe full of confidence.”
You can listen to a full interview with Straker post-Mansfield on Blues Player, or hear a clip of his thoughts on our official YouTube channel.