Shinnie delighted to be adding goals to his game
Hatters midfielder Andrew Shinnie is determined to keep on experiencing the joyous feeling of scoring a goal after bagging his second of the season during the 4-1 win over Accrington Stanley in midweek.
The former Birmingham and Hibernian player only managed one in the league last term, that against Carlisle, with his other two strikes coming at AFC Wimbledon in the Checkatrade Trophy.
However, he doubled his tally for the campaign in just 11 league outings on Tuesday night, and was thrilled to see his practice on the training ground paying dividends on a match day.
Shinnie said: “It’s always good to get a goal and I want to add it to my game.
“I’ve been working on it in training, that’s another one tonight, so that’s a couple and I’ll be looking to get a third, I want to get more.
“It’s a great feeling when you score, you can’t beat it. It was a big game to score in, because the kind of game it is with them, you don’t want to lose to them.
“They know how to rub it in your face, they did it here last year, so that was the motivation for us, the second half we really wanted to win the game, so it was a nice game to score in.”
Shinnie’s goal was an opportunist effort as well, as he intercepted a pass out of defence by Mark Hughes, before taking a touch and finding the bottom corner from 20 yards.
He continued: “I've seen the midfielder peel off, and he was trying to play it from the back a bit, I knew he was going to play it.
“I kind of read that and as soon as I got it, I knew I was going to shoot.
“Collo (James Collins) said he was going to rip my head off if it hadn’t went in, but I said I need to be a bit more selfish this year and stop passing all the time.
"So as soon as I got it, I thought get it out of my feet and hit it, and it went in.”
Boss Nathan Jones, who has often mention his desire for Shinnie’s name to register on the scoresheet more often, said “We keep on about him, he doesn’t get enough, he’s had one first half, which was a very tame left footed effort, but that’s what he can do and as soon as we get that from him, he’s some player.
“He ball carries, he’s clever, he keeps you in possession, he sees things, he works, he’s a tireless worker and we just want to give him slightly more goals and he’s done that, a great finish.”
Team-mate Danny Hylton was another to praise Shinnie’s impact as well, saying: “I remember the lead up to the goal, I tried to play it round the corner and completely missed the ball, its broke to Shinnie and we’ve scored.
“He’s another person who’s got great ability, great quality and he’s a joy to play with as he’s so good on the ball, he makes things happen.
“When you’ve got players like that, playing behind you, you’re always going to get chances and I think he’ll tell you he wants to score more goals and he’s starting to do that now.”
It wasn’t just scoring that Shinnie brought to the victory on Tuesday night though, as seconds after putting Town 2-1 in front, he won the ball back, overlapped Jorge Grant and then swept the ball in for Hylton to notch his second of the evening.
The midfielder said: “He’s a massive player for us, it's great to have Danny back and he’s a good finisher, if he gets a chance he puts it away.
“Gaps were opening up for us and we’ve got the players, Jorgey’s so composed on the ball, so I knew if I went round him he’d slip me in.
“The pull back we work hard on that in training quite a lot, we work on flashing it across goal but also cutting it back as all the defenders get attracted to the goal-line, so I managed to pull it back and Hylts was there to tap it in.”
He was quick to realise the importance of the goal too, adding: “It was massive, I feel like that killed the game really.
“We’re defensively strong, as after their goal, in the second half, they regrouped, had a little bit of pressure, a few crosses and a few corners, but we dealt with it well and 3-1, gave us a cushion.
“Two one’s a bit nervy, but 3-1 gave us the cushion and to get the fourth goal it was a lot more comfortable.
“We had to do defender though as they’ve got some decent players. Billy Kee gets a lot of goals, (Sean) McConville out wide has good delivery, can score good goals, they’ve got a good team, so we knew we had to be at it.
"But we’ve got that edge defensively, we're quite strong this year, apart from a few slack goals we gave away, but we’re working hard on that in training.
"We work very hard on our structure, defence and attacking, so it’s coming to fruition on the pitch."
It could have been even more in the closing stages too, with Luton counter-attacking almost at will, as Shinnie added; “That’s the thing, we did it last year in League Two, once we get a few goals up then teams obviously have to go for it, and we bring Harry (Cornick) on and just give him the ball and let him run, and that’s what he did when he came on.
“They couldn’t really live with him and we’d have just been a bit more precise with our last ball or our finish.
"I think Collo (James Collins) had a chance he’d normally bury at the end, so it could have been five, six, seven one, but 4-1’s a great result and we’re on a good run.”