FREDDIE Ladapo has capped a wonderful October, in which he scored six times and laid on another two for team-mates, by scooping the Sky Bet League One player of the month award.
“It’s a very big deal for me,” said Freddie. “This is probably the first proper award that I have actually received, it’s probably one of the best moments I’ve had so far.
“It’s a fantastic month for me. Obviously, it took a while to start off at a new club – I just signed this summer – but the players, the fans, the management, they’ve made it easy for me to settle in.
“I’m enjoying my football a hell of a lot. Coming here as a new player, you want to just hit the ground running and get going. I think the goals I’ve scored have given people a lot of confidence in me and playing in front of 10,000 fans every week is fantastic.”
It had been a tough start to life at Argyle for the striker, especially after missing some gilt-edged chances in the midweek 1-1 draw at Barnsley on October 2.
Freddie’s first goal of the month came in our first League win against Wimbledon on the following weekend at Home Park, when he headed home from no more than a yard out to give us a vital 1-0 victory. A goal, which he says, was a relief to get.
“That was the ‘weight off the shoulders’ moment,” said Freddie. “Once one has gone in, I don’t need to worry, stress or lash at things probably like I would have done if I didn’t score.”
Back at the Theatre of Greens, two weeks later, Freddie started from where he left off against Burton Albion. Despite losing that game, he says he has been waiting a long time to score a goal like the one he notched to open the scoring in that fixture.
“The first goal in the Burton game [was my favourite],” he said. “I have always said that is a goal I have always wanted to score. Where you come inside, a few step overs and then bend it in. It’s always been a want or a dream, rather than it actually happening. When it did happen, it gave me confidence to take more shots.”
Freddie would score again against the Brewers, rounding the keeper to tap into an empty net to put us ahead again. Despite losing that game 3-2, Freddie was the talking point in the next home match against Gillingham just three days later.
A thunderous right-footed shot gave us the lead and a cushioned header 10 minutes before half-time put us two up. In the second half, he turned provider for Ruben Lameiras. Then one more goal was to follow on the 27th of the month away to Scunthorpe in a very convincing 4-1 win, in which, Freddie opened the scoring.
Freddie feels that, due to a string of good performances, we are starting games far more positively, which, in turn, helps the spirit among the team
“We go into games more confident now,” he said. “The team chemistry and the banter is good, it’s more like a family. We’ve always been working for things to go in the right direction; these results have showed that we have turned a corner.
“We need to keep our head down and be humble in what we are doing. It will still take a while but we’re heading in the right way.“