Grimsby Town loan striker Richard Brodie says the best is yet to come
RICHARD Brodie went from villain to hero to send Grimsby Town three points clear at the Conference summit, before insisting “there’s more in the locker”.
The on-loan striker had an eventful Saturday afternoon as the Mariners claimed a vital 4-2 home victory over Alfreton Town.
Newport County’s clash with Kidderminster Harriers was postponed, while Forest Green Rovers and Wrexham battled out a draw.
Elsewhere, Luton Town were beaten at lowly Barrow, meaning the Mariners were the only side in the pre-match top-six to take three points from the weekend.
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Brodie was at the heart of that priceless victory – giving away a penalty, earning a spot-kick, netting his first Town goal, and setting up another in the second half.
He even had time to collect a yellow card before he left the action to a standing ovation after 68 minutes.
Now, the Crawley Town man – who admits he has endured a frustrating start to life at Blundell Park – has promised Mariners fans there is much more to come.
“I know there’s more in the locker from me,” he told the Telegraph. “I did okay on Saturday but I still think I can do a lot more, which is pleasing. I’m settling in well off the field, and getting used to playing in a different system, for me, on the pitch.
“I haven’t walked into a team who are struggling – I’ve come into a good team.
“I was disappointed not to start on Tuesday or against Cambridge, but these lads have got Grimsby Town to the top of the table and I haven’t got a divine right to walk into any side.
“That’s why the performance I put in on Saturday came at such a great time, especially with Lenell John-Lewis coming in for his first game as well.”
Following John-Lewis’ deadline day arrival, Brodie appreciates that Saturday’s clash was a chance to remain high up the pecking order among Town’s seven available strikers.
But, the 25-year-old’s eagerness to impress saw him give away a first-half penalty, and allow the Reds to take a surprise lead.
He added: “I think that’s the first penalty I’ve given away in my career, and I’ll probably keep away from that end of the pitch from now on!
“I would have complained if I hadn’t have been given it at the other end.
“I lunged to get the ball and maybe should have just let him go. But it came from my poor clearance in the first place so I tried to redeem myself and was just a bit over-enthusiastic.
“It was a sloppy start in general, from us collectively. The wind didn’t help and we couldn’t get out of our half early on, so maybe that was the kick up the backside we needed.”
Brodie soon set the record straight, earning a penalty at the other end before putting his side in front in first-half injury time.
“We went in at half-time and we hadn’t played particularly well but somehow we were in front,” he said.
“With Kempo (Darran Kempson) and their defence, you know they’re going to win everything in the air and be physical.
“But if you can get them on the floor and in one-on-one situations – especially going back towards their own goal – you’ve got a chance.
“It was a foul in the first place because Kempo pulled me back but then Leigh Franks came in with a tackle and brought me down anyway, so it was a double foul really.
“I scored plenty of penalties at York and netted five at the start of the season in the Football League for Morecambe.
“But with Jamie scoring the last one, I had to let him take it. I was disappointed but he put the ball away and we got back on level terms.”
On his first goal since joining Town on loan for the remainder of the campaign, he added: “It was the best possible time to score. It dropped to me in the box and I managed to get my body in the way.
“If I had gone down I probably would have got another penalty – if you get your body in between the defender and the goal you’ve always got a chance, and I just poked it past the keeper.
“It was a great feeling, to get off the mark. It’s been a long time coming and I’ve put a lot of hard work in.
“There’s been a bit of frustration here and there, so it was a big relief.”
The hosts added two more goals after the break to ensure victory despite never being at their best, but Brodie isn’t too concerned by the performance.
“Football is all about results,” he commented. “The perfect example was when I was at Morecambe at the start of the season because we were playing great football but not getting the wins.
“So it was great for us to get the three points on Saturday, especially with some games off and other teams slipping up.
“We have a free week which is very rare in this league, but the series of midweek games coming up soon will be great – especially when you’re on a good run like we are.”