MICHAEL FLYNN was delighted to score his first league goals for Town – but insisted a first home league victory was of far more importance.
Having opened his account in the Carling Cup clash with Sheffield United, the Welsh midfielder provided further evidence of his shooting prowess with Town’s second and third in last Saturday’s five-goal Galpharm showdown with Northampton Town.
While the first was slickly dispatched, there was an element of good fortune about the second, with Cobblers goalkeeper Chris Dunn spilling another right-foot drive from the man who has been playing on the left side.
But former Blackpool player Flynn, who once scored in the Champions League for Barry Town, believes his current club were due a slice of luck.
“I don’t think we’d been getting the rub of the green in previous games, so it was great for that to change,” said the 27-year-old of the 3-2 win over the Cobblers which hoisted Town eight places to 15th in League I ahead of today’s big derby at Oldham Athletic.
“It wasn’t a total fluke, because I actually made a good connection with the ball, and there was some power in the shot.
“But I must admit that when I saw the keeper go down to smother, I thought he had saved it. Once it came out of his grasp, though, I knew it was going over the line, so I was able to celebrate.”
The goal put Town 3-1 up, although supporters had to endure a tense finish after Northampton reduced the arrears 30 seconds into stoppage time.
Flynn still felt Town were good value for their victory, adding: “The manager described it as being a monkey off our backs, but I don’t really know why the monkey was there in the first place.
“When I signed, I thought there were already a lot of good players at the club, and with those Stan Ternent has brought in, there is a lot of quality here.
“It always takes time to gel as a team, but we shouldn’t really have had to wait too long before getting that first home win.
“The draw with Stockport County on the opening day was a fair result, but when MK Dons came here, we just didn’t turn up (Roberto Di Matteo’s men won 3-1).
“Then there was the well-documented game against Tranmere Rovers, and given the start we made, it was one we should really have won.
“But of course we let them get a grip and get a 2-1 win, and I think it was fair enough that the manager had a right go at us – we deserved the criticism.”
As well as some harsh words, Ternent upped the training schedule last week, and Flynn believes the extra hours paid dividends.
“After the performance we put in against Tranmere, we didn’t deserve a day off,” added the Newport-born player, who has also had spells at Wigan Athletic and Gillingham.
“It was a tough week, but it was also one of most enjoyable I’ve had in a long time. The coaching staff didn’t flog us, we worked on specific plans for the Northampton game – shapes and balances, as the manager likes to say.
“There was a real determination among the players to get the win – it had come to the point where we realised we had to stand up and be counted – and even after going a goal down, we stuck together and kept our focus.”
Now the aim is to continue climbing the table, and having played under Ternent at Gillingham, Flynn is convinced he can take Town forward.
“Gillingham were struggling big style in the Championship when Stan took over in early December of 2004,” he explained.
“I signed for them on February 2, 2005, and of the 16 matches between then and the end of the season, we lost only three.
“We ended up being relegated by a goal (Crewe survived with a difference of -20 as opposed to the Gills’ -21) and it’s fair to say that if Stan had got the job a couple of weeks earlier, we would probably have stayed up.
“That’s the only relegation on his CV, and it was a close-run thing, and then you have to look at his promotions with Bury and Burnley.
“He brought success on a budget at both those clubs, and even though a lot’s been made of the incoming chairman (Dean Hoyle) providing funds, a lot of the new lads here, myself included, have come in on free transfers.
“Stan’s a born winner who has a great record of promotions, and he won’t be satisfied until he gets another here.
“It might take a little while to get things the way he wants, and nobody will be getting carried away after the Northampton win, but when he does, just watch us go.”