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Priorities

21 December 2014

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AS far as Reuben Reid is concerned, being Argyle’s leading scorer is some way down his list of personal and professional priorities at the moment.

His Home Park double against Dagenham & Redbridge, either side of a sublime team goal by Bobby Reid, gave the Pilgrims a 3-0 victory that maintained their fifth-place position in Sky Bet League 2.

It also took his total goals for the campaign to 13 but he said: “I’m not one to look at my ratings or goals scored. Obviously it’s nice to get goals, but for me it’s all about the three points on a Saturday.

“Honestly, I am just thankful to be playing regular football and training hard during the week to keep my fitness. Once I can start playing games consistently, as I have been over the past 24 months for this club, that’s good enough for me – playing in a winning team.

“It seems to be a good tally. It could be better, I think. I didn’t score for the last four games, which was disappointing for me, even though I still feel I’m contributing to the team.

“Obviously, I’m happy to get the goals and contribute to good team wins. Goals are in the back of my mind – I’m buzzing when we win games and I complete 90 minutes and feel good in my body.”

Reuben’s strike partnership with Lewi Alessandra has now realised 20 goals in 25 matches, with the latter laying on the 41st-minute opener against the Daggers.

“Lewi was on fire in the first half – what a performance from him – which helps me out, and the team,” said Reuben. “He got behind again, and I made a good run; he fired the ball across and I was quite pleased with the finish, because it is one of those that, if you think too much about it, you won’t get good contact. I aimed to keep it low and thankfully it went in; it was a really good team goal.
 
“He’s a massive help to me, with his energy and the way he can manipulate the ball sometimes.

“There’s always room for improvement between us two, which is a good sign; if we can click even better, then there could be a lot more goals to come.”

Like all good teams, though, the Pilgrims’ form is founded on a strong defence and a team-ethic that does not let opponents settle from the opening whistle to the last.

“The first goal is crucial and we start on fire,” said Reuben. “When you keep retaining the ball and then going again and attacking the ball…sometimes I’ve looked in centre-backs’ faces and they are pouring with sweat and already looking flustered. So I’ve said to the lads ‘Come on, kick on again – this is our time to score’. Thankfully, for the past few weeks and months, we have been doing that.

“Keeping the back door shut has been pretty key; the two wing-backs [Kelvin Mellor and Andy Kellett], myself, Lewi and Bobby are given a license to go and win the game for the lads. A massive point for us – what we have been doing well – is the energy levels and commitment to make runs for other people, and to get up and down the field. We’re catching teams cold.”

All of which has the Green Army dreaming, not of a white Christmas, but a Green spring. Their hope is shared by their heroes, but cautiously.

Reuben said: “With the squad the manager has put together – the quality in all areas – we have got to be fighting to get in the play-offs.

“We have done nothing yet. There is a massive amount of games and we are just coming up to Christmas now. You will see a little gap open up now and we have just got to hope we keep our performances up to the same level so we can be there or thereabouts at the end.”

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