Wrexham AFC: Manny Smith 'shocked' after goalscoring exploits seal first win

Reporter:

Rich Williams

MANNY SMITH  admitted he was shocked after scoring two goals in a game for the first time in his career.

The centre-back, who rejoined Wrexham for a second spell from Gateshead this summer, struck twice as the Reds triumphed 2-1 against Maidenhead United at York Road on Tuesday.

Having scored just one league goal in two seasons during his first stint at Wrexham, Smith has now eclipsed that feat after just two matches of the 2017-18 campaign.

“That is me for the season now!” said Smith, who played in the Football League for Walsall and Notts County.

“It is always nice to get a goal but I have never scored two in a game. I am still surprised now! 

“I shouldn’t have been up there for the second but James Jennings told me to go up and luckily I was in the right spot again.

“It was good to score two goals and I’m top goalscorer!”

Smith opened the scoring in the 40th minute after getting on the end of Marcus Kelly’s free-kick, and the 28-year-old heaped praise on his team-mate for the quality of his set-pieces.

“We know he has got quality and he is going to put the ball in areas,” said Smith.

“The gaffer has told us where to go and make our runs.

“If he is putting the ball in there, we have to put our bodies on the line and try to get on the end of it. Luckily I got on the end of one.”

But the lead was short-lived as newly promoted Maidenhead equalised just two minutes later.

Despite the set-back, Smith always believed Wrexham could reclaim the lead and he got on the end of a 77th minute cross to secure the Reds’ first win of the campaign.

“It is always disappointing to concede, especially straight after we’d scored,” said Smith.

“But we had a talk at half-time and we had enough chances and enough belief to know that we would get more chances. And when we get a chance, to put it away.

“Credit to all the boys, everyone dug in and everyone ran their socks off for each other.

“We got the result we needed and it is a good feeling.”

Maidenhead, promoted as National League South champions last season, boast an impressive record at York Road in recent years and Smith believes the Magpies will be a force to be reckoned with at home.

“When you get to later in the season, it is not going to be a nice place to come,” said Smith.

“Maidenhead have got a certain way of playing and they will take points off teams.

“They got promoted last season so they have got a bit about them and they have got that belief so it is not going to be a nice place to come for most teams.”

Wrexham began the season with a 1-0 home defeat against Macclesfield and Smith stressed the importance of bouncing back from Saturday's opening day loss at the first attempt.

“When you lose your first game at home, people want to see a reaction and the gaffer wants to see a reaction,” added Smith.

“The boys wanted to get back out playing and the game couldn’t have come quick enough.

“To come here, do a job and get a result, it is great to everyone.

“We’ll enjoy it, recover and then forget about it, and concentrate on Saturday.”

Reds’ boss Dean Keates was as surprised as Smith to see the defender bag a brace.

”Manny has probably never scored two goals in his whole career or in a season,” said Keates.

”We are not bothered who scores. We have told them to get the balls in the right areas and bodies in there and luckily enough Manny was there.”

DON’T MISS ALL THE BIG MATCH BUILD TOWARDS THE REDS’ GAME AT DOVER IN TOMORROW’S LEADER

Email:

rich.williams@nwn.co.uk

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