Sky Blues match-winner Zain Westbrooke is pleased his hard work and patience has paid off, on the opening day of the new League One campaign.
The midfielder scored his first goal for the club in the one-nil victory against Southend United and was buzzing to be in the starting line-up.
Westbrooke said: “It’s obviously nice to get a goal and it shows that hard work has paid off for me. It’s been a tough pre-season coming back and I wanted to improve on last season.
“I got in and got around the team and started getting minutes at the end of the season and I just wanted more of that and to start the first game I was buzzing with that. I wanted to make a statement and it couldn’t have gone better for me than it did.”
Speaking about his goal, Westbrooke admitted he was ecstatic to see the ball hit the back of the net.
“I don’t really remember it that much actually, I was just ecstatic when it went in. Jordy’s come across and I’m screaming please, please lay me off here!
“It’s just one of those, if you just catch it right, it goes in and you don’t quite know what to do with yourself after.”
Aside from his goal however, Westbrooke impressed alongside Liam Kelly and Jordan Shipley in a three-man midfield.
“I think we’ve got a good balance in midfield, it’s got a bit of everything as well and we’ve got goals in there. I need to help provide some goals, Shipperz could definitely get some goals in there and our front three, they’ll be a problem this season.
The 22-year-old was also encouraged by the Sky Blues performance and delighted with the fans support on Saturday afternoon.
“We started the game quick, that’s what we needed to do, get the fans cheering for us and they were brilliant for us today, just pushing us on from minute one until minute 90 and it showed we’ve got a little bit in us and hopefully more will come because I think it will be a good journey for us this season.”
He also believes the team has already made improvements on last season, having withstood a late barrage of Southend pressure to claim the points.
“It was one-nil with 15 minutes to go and they started to put the pressure on and rightly so. That’s what they have to do, they’re away, they’re coming here to get a point or get a win and we had to deal with that.
“I think we showed today, much better than last year, that we can deal with that as well because a lot of times last season we were under the cosh at the end of games because we hadn’t put away our chances.