BRISTOLIAN Reuben Reid’s third goal of the season condemned his hometown team to defeat and gave Argyle their second successive 1-0 home victory of the campaign......which lifted them into the top half of the League 2 table.
Reuben, who still has a home within walking distance of Rovers’ Memorial Stadium, headed home captain Conor Hourihane’s 82nd-minute free-kick in front of the FES Devonport End to claim the spoils from a scrappy match.
It was a delivery that Reuben had asked his skipper for only a few seconds earlier.
He said: “This season, Conor has been a very good performer for us over the eight games. He’s put over consistently good deliveries.
“He floated over a couple of crosses and, literally just before the goal, I said to him: ‘Have some confidence, get on the ball and whip it across hard’ and he did just that with the next kick. It was asking to be headed in.
“Thankfully, I got across my man and was there to put my head in. As a striker, you can’t ask for more.
“I really felt good about the goal because of the way it came about.
“I don’t think it was a good game for the players or for the fans, particularly in the first half. It was a bitty game and the ball was in the air a lot.
“We sort of tinkered the formation a bit for the second half and seemed to have a bit more energy about us, and a bit more purpose. We were worthy of the three points in the end.”
Reuben felt that, in addition to pushing Rommy Boco into a more advanced position, the decision to come out early after the half-time interval had an effect on the match.
“It’s new for us,” he said. “Sometimes, I find that in that break – 15 minutes – I go a bit stale. I’d like to just play the whole 90 minutes straight off. I’d have a quick drinks break, but it’s like I have to start all over again, the way my body reacts.
“We come out early and do a few exercises, almost a second warm-up. That, coupled with the change of formation, worked well for us today.
“We got Boco having more influence on the game. We need him to be getting on the ball because he’s one of those players who can be a threat, and protect the ball and give it to players in a position to affect the game.”
Argyle’s rise up the League 2 table comes after defeats in their opening three games, since when they have lost just once in the most recent five matches, at Morecambe seven days earlier.
“This league is about consistency,” said Reuben. “Anybody, on their day, can turn you over. We found that last week. No disrespect to Morecambe, but we went there with an expectation to beat that side and then would have been in a great position, going into two home games.
“It shows what can happen in this league on any given Saturday, or Tuesday night. You have got to come to the table every time or there is a danger of being turned over, no matter who you are.”