'I've been waiting a long time for this moment!' - McWilliams cherishes his first Cobblers goal

Shaun McWilliams' celebration said everything you need to know about how much his first Cobblers goal meant to him.

Sunday, 22nd September 2019, 5:14 pm
An ecstatic Shaun McWilliams sets off to celebrate his first Cobblers goal. Picture: Pete Norton

The hometown boy, playing his 68th game for Northampton since breaking through the youth ranks two and a half years ago, has not always had an easy ride since Keith Curle's appointment as manager almost 12 months ago.

But after barely featuring at all towards the end of last season, he's since become one of the first names on the team sheet and is currently on a run of 11 successive starts, albeit not all have come in his favoured central midfield position.

Against Crawley Town on Saturday, he again played in an advanced role and produced a superb all-round performance that was topped off by his first goal in senior football, a controlled first-time finish from Sam Hoskins' cross on 65 minutes.

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"The gaffer has moved me into more of an attacking role recently and given me more of a licence to get forward," he said afterwards.

"I saw Sam Hoskins break through and I think I screamed for the ball early but I saw him go down the wing, held my run and when I got it I was more composed than I have been ever before!

"Of course it was a great feeling. I've been waiting a long time for this moment and as you could see from my celebration I didn't really know how to react!"

Once the ball hit the net, all the emotions came pouring out as McWilliams, now 21, sprinted off, ran around for a bit and then went sliding towards the West Stand. The only thing missing from a perfect afternoon was all three points.

"I knew my family were sitting in that stand so I headed over there," he added. "I couldn't really see them but hopefully they know I went over there to celebrate in front of them.

"The way the game ended was disappointing because we should have won and that would have made it better, but I'm happy to get my first goal."