Cobblers boss Dean Austin has praised the attitude of Billy Waters, and spoken of his delight that the striker broke his scoring duck with the winning goal in last Saturday’s 2-1 win at Colchester United.
And he also revealed that the 23-year-old is now in charge of the pre-match music in the Town dressing room after making an impressive debut on that score last weekend!
Second-half substitute Waters bundled home from close range in stoppage time put Town 2-0 up in Essex, with the team holding on for their first win of the season despite a late own goal from Aaron Pierre.
It was the front-runner’s first competitive goal for the club since his move from Cheltenham Town in the summer of 2017, in his 26th appearance for the club - although only 13 of them have been starts.
The player revelled in his big moment, and it would have been particularly sweet for him as he has endured a difficult time with the Cobblers.
He was unwanted by previous manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and was loaned out to Cambridge United last season, and then in the summer he was regularly touted as a player who might be on the move.
Billy listens to the things that I am trying to help him become better at, and I feel he can become a real asset for us in a couple of roles to be honestCobblers boss Dean Austin
There was reportedly interest in him from Port Vale, but nothing came of it, and he got his head down when he returned for pre-season training under new boss Austin, who has been impressed by the player’s work ethic and personality.
Asked if Waters had an extra spring in his step this week following his goal, Austin said: “I spoke to Bill on Tuesday, and he was the same as he always is.
“He comes in and he always has a smile on his face, he comes in and works his socks off and trains really well.
“He listens to the things that I am trying to help him become better at, and I feel he can become a real asset for us in a couple of roles to be honest.
“I was delighted for him that he got his goal on Saturday, as it is reward for all of the hard work he has put in.”
And on that summer speculation about a move away from the PTS Academy Stadium for Waters, the Town boss added: “I am not a manager that forces people out of the door.
“Players are contracted to the football club, they come in every day and do their work, and we have got a good squad.
“They work well, they are good people, which is very, very important to me, that the human being is as important as what they are as a talent.
“Bill’s a great lad, a positive light, who is great in the dressing room, and a good singer!”
As well as praising his singing ability, Austin also suggested Waters might have a future as a DJ after he took over the pre-match music duties at Colchester, firing the Cobblers up with a late 70s rock classic!
“He was on DJ duties on Saturday, as Dai (David Cornell) was binned off and Billy put on, and we have won the game, so now Dai is off and Bill is on,” said Austin.
“Bill went for a bit of Queen before game on Saturday, with We Will Rock You, and it had everybody going, and got me going as well to be fair. It was good.”