One of the best I've hit - Roberts
Written by Rory Mitchinson
Cal Roberts felt that his strike in Newcastle United Under-23s’ Premier League Cup victory over Notts County was among the best of his career to date.
The 21-year-old netted what proved to be the game’s decisive goal just before the break, gathering the ball near the halfway line before driving forward and picking out the top corner with a rasping effort.
It was already a fourth of the campaign for Roberts – in just his eighth appearance – though the winger stressed that he is striving to add to his tally heading into a busy period.
“It’s one of the best I’ve hit. It’s one of those where you just don’t feel it come off your foot. I looked up and it was in the back of the net, so I was really pleased about that,” he told nufc.co.uk.
“I’m happy I’ve scored four goals so far, but I’m still trying to get the consistency every week. I want to score every week and I want to get an assist every week. That’s just how I am. I know players can’t play to their best every single week, every single game, but that’s the way I am and I want to do that. Getting another goal tonight, hopefully it’s a step in the right direction.”
After an inconsistent start to the campaign, the Magpies have now won twice in the space of four days, having also overcome Fulham at Whitley Park on Monday night – a game in which Roberts was absent.
They looked to be cruising after establishing a two-goal lead against Notts, but a late effort from substitute Josh Bingham set up something of a tense finish.
Without necessarily being at their best, Roberts was pleased with the manner in which United saw out the remainder of the game, with a meeting with County’s senior side next up in the Checkatrade Trophy.
“I think, at the minute, we’re making it too hard for ourselves – we all know that as a team,” he said. “Against Fulham, I didn’t play but I watched the lads go 3-0 up and then just lead 3-2, and again tonight, we went 2-0 up but it ended up finishing 2-1. But, we did well to manage the game, and we did the same against Fulham, as well.
“We’re not really happy about the way we played. It’s not the way we want to play, and we didn’t play to our best, but we’ve now got six points in two games and it’s back to back wins, which is good to take into the Checkatrade Trophy.
“It shows how hard the lads have worked. Tonight, we’ve had to dig deep as a team because we knew we had to see out the game in those final ten or 15 minutes, after they got the goal, and I think we did that really well.”
"It’s one of the best I’ve hit. It’s one of those where you just don’t feel it come off your foot. I looked up and it was in the back of the net, so I was really pleased about that."