Matty Sorinola

Middlesbrough (A) | Sorinola's Reaction

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Matty Sorinola’s first goal for Argyle set the Pilgrims on their way to an excellent 2-0 win at Middlesbrough on Saturday.

The wing-back, who turned 23 last week, pounced after Darko Gyabi’s shot was saved by Middlesbrough goalkeeper Tom Glover, to give Argyle a seventh-minute lead.

Argyle controlled the game, and when Ryan Hardie added a second, his 13th of the season, just after the half-hour mark, the Greens had a lead they never looked like surrendering.

Sorinola’s goal in many ways set the tone – but what was going through his head as the ball felt to him?

“Don't put it over the bar!” he said. “Just try to get on target really. I thought the keeper had saved it but he pushed it into the net. I was just happy to get my first goal for the club.

“For wing backs, we’re trying to get to the back stick a lot. We know we’ll get chances. I thought ‘if I make it here, I could be in’.

“Anyone playing in that position, or finds themselves out there in the game, just try and make that back stick, chances come. This chance came, and luckily I took it.

“[It felt] very good. My first goal for the club, important three points. I thought the boys were amazing today. We dug deep.

“Middlesbrough are a good team. We knew if they got it right, they can punish us. I felt like we were on top of them in that moment, so we needed to keep on top and try to score as much as possible.

“We should have punished them; [in the] first half we should have been three, four up. [At half-time, the gaffer said] we should have been more ruthless, but keep going, stick in there, [get a] clean sheet. We've done that, and I’m so proud of everyone today.

“[In the] second half, we stuck to it: a clean sheet, three points – [that’s the] most important thing.”

The game was Sorinola’s eighth appearance for Argyle – his fourth start – having signed in the January transfer window. Matty had been with Union SG in Belgium, but got precious little game-time there, following a loan spell in the Sky Bet Championship last season with Swansea City.

He feels like he is improving and building with every game he plays, and has already built a strong rapport with the Green Army, who numbered nearly 1,000 at Middlesbrough.

“I feel like it’s still early doors for me,” said Matty. “Every game, getting more minutes, starting, going as long as possible – and giving my all.

“Obviously, the boys out there helped me as well. I know if I'm not starting, everyone's got quality. So, when I'm playing, I have to be on it 100%.

“The fans are amazing here. They traveled a long way, and I feel like we gave them something to celebrate about.

“I heard them singing my name as well. It gave me confidence to keep going.  We all appreciate what they do, how far they travel - thanks to them again.”

an evening with Ricky Hatton