Scoring a goal on your debut for your new club is a dream any striker harbours at the start of the season and Paul Mullin was delighted to make that a reality on Saturday.
Leading the line against Carlisle United alongside Luke Norris, the 22-year-old looked lively from the first whistle and he went close on a couple of occasions in the first-half.
And he reaped his rewards shortly after the break, bundling home the rebound after John Goddard’s shot was parried into his path by Cumbrians’ stopper Jack Bonham.
That goal proved to be the winner with Town running out 2-1 victors and Mullin was full of praise for the way his side performed on the opening day of the new season.
“Scoring a goal on your debut is obviously a dream start and the emotion of all the hard work I’ve put in during pre-season just came out,” he told the local press.
“Scoring a goal to get off the mark in the first game of the season is excellent.
“I thought it was magnificent in the first-half and we were phenomenal. They couldn’t deal with us and we were pressing them everywhere - they couldn’t get out of their own half.
“We created plenty of chances and I thought that was superb in the first-half. We came out in the second-half and we knew we needed to do a job and see the game out.
“We obviously got the second goal early which gave us a little bit more of a cushion and, although they replied quite quickly, the team performance in the second-half was magnificent.
“All the hard work in pre-season doing shape and tactical work has paid off.
“It was very, very tough at the end of the game even after all the work we’ve put in during pre-season and we all did a lot of running for each other.
“That’s what we’re going to need this year and it was a tough game. Thankfully we got the three points.
“Carlisle tried to play expansive football and we saw it as a positive for us. A lot of teams will find it difficult to play against them this season because of their movement and the way they pass the ball around the pitch, but our team shape, team spirit and performance was the difference.”
Mullin was used in different roles throughout the game against United, but he was just happy to have played his role in achieving all three points on the opening day.
“I’m a centre-forward but I’ll play anywhere if it allows me to do a job for the side,” he continued.
“It was my job defensively to stop them playing as fast as I could in the first-half but when we got the ball it was to cause them problems, get in-behind and get around Luke (Norris) to support him.
“Then in the second-half after we got the goal I was moved out wide to try and help us see out the result.
“I don’t mind doing that and the job then was to stop crosses and stop them coming forward, so I’m glad I was able to do that.”
“Scoring a goal on your debut is obviously a dream start and the emotion of all the hard work I’ve put in during pre-season just came out."
Town now face a trip to Norwich City in the First Round of the Carabao Cup on Tuesday, and Mullin is looking forward to the prospect of pitting his wits against a Championship outfit.
“Every day in football you always want a new challenge and a new task and Tuesday is going to be no different,” he added.
“It is going to be a tough test for us but one we will relish and everyone wants to dig in and try and get through to the next round.”