Sam Parkin hopes draw can kick-start Exeter City's away form
Sam Parkin hopes that his equalising goal in Exeter City’s weekend draw at Dagenham & Redbridge can be the catalyst for the Grecians to improve their away form.
After a poor first half, in which they trailed 1-0, and a couple of inspired half-time changes, the Grecians fought back to claim a share of the spoils when Parkin thumped a header home ten minutes from full-time.
City could have gone on and won the game but, with a tricky trip to Northampton Town looming, Parkin is happy that City can go there with their first goal and second point away from home on the board.
“It gives us something to build on,” Parkin said. “I have spoken about it with a few of the guys over the last few days and we wouldn’t have liked to have gone another game without getting anything on the road after the disappointment of Morecambe [where City lost 2-0].
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“It is really pleasing to get a point after suffering such a disappointing first half but, overall, I think everyone is satisfied with the start of the season and it has given us something to build on.
“No one is getting carried away yet, it is still early doors, but there has been a bit of a turn in fortunes with regards to our home and away form. Last year’s away form was tremendous and the home form was disappointing, so we need to strike a balance there and pick up points at home and away and I’m sure we will have a successful campaign.”
Parkin’s goal was his second of the campaign and was something of a trademark header. He was also on target in the opening-day win over Bristol Rovers, and his two goals for the new term match what he managed in the whole of last season for Scottish Premier League side St Mirren.
“I was really pleased. It was a great ball in from Matt Oakley,” he said. “We had just started to turn the screw on them before the goal, so it had been coming.
“I made a run into the box and the ball was there for me to attack, I got a good connection and I was really, really pleased to see it go in.
“As a centre-forward, you love scoring that type of goal and I have scored a few like that throughout my career. You can tell with the pace and the whip on the ball that it is a really inviting one to attack and, sometimes, you manage to get that connection that I managed to get, and I was pleased to see it go in.”
For long spells of the game, it was hard to see where a goal was coming from for Exeter, certainly in the first half, where the Grecians were well below par.
“Everyone will be a bit disappointed at how we played in the first half, as we didn’t create too much and they were causing us a lot of problems going forward,” Parkin said. “We managed to weather the storm a bit because we could have gone two goals behind and left ourselves with a mountain to climb.
“I think it was a deserved point on the balance of play in the second half. We were probably second-best in the first half, so we changed a few things around at half-time and we seemed to be in the ascendancy. The two lads who came on [David Wheeler and Jimmy Keohane] made a real difference.”
Next up for Parkin and for Exeter is a return to his former club, Northampton. The
31-year-old spent the 2000-01 season on loan at Sixfields from Chelsea, scoring five times in 46 League and cup appearances. Parkin is not expecting an easy ride.
He said: “It’s another trip on the road and a place I know well as I spent a year on loan there as a young lad, so no doubt there will be a few boos for me as usual!”
“But I’m looking forward to it, I’ve played there a few times and there are always a few faces around the club that I know. I haven’t played against them for a few years but, from what I’m led to believe, they are a strong unit at this level and it will be a tough game.”