CONNOR Mahoney is targeting more goals this season after his wonder strike against Real Sociedad at The Den last Saturday – and a top-half Championship finish.
Mahoney scored two league goals in 30 games for Birmingham last season. After Ben Thompson’s strike found the top corner against the Spanish side, Mahoney cut in from the right side of the box to fire into the far top corner.
“It was unbelievable, wasn’t it? Goal of the season already! I was on the left for the first half and most of the second half and I then switched to the right,” Mahoney said. “The right is probably were I prefer to play, cutting inside and doing that. I thought that was the best team goal. Thommo’s was a better strike but team goal I felt that one was very good so that’s pleasing.
“I think I need to score more goals, last year I didn’t get many shots and stuff like that. This season I’ve set my targets for what I want to hit and I think I’ll be able to do that.
“It was a good game, to be fair, I enjoyed it. I didn’t think it was going to be like that, I thought it was going to be a bit more hoof-ball from us, but I think we proved we can get it down and play on the floor and score some good goals.
“A big thing for me is to get assists this season. I think I've showed the delivery will be where it needs to be most of the time, obviously sometimes I won’t get it spot on but that’s something I work on a lot. If I can get a good partnership with Coops [Jake Cooper] or Smudge [Matt Smith] then they're going to score a lot of goals from my set-pieces, hopefully.”
Mahoney could make his full competitive debut against Preston on Saturday. He knows how hostile The Den can be, even for home players if things aren’t going the Lions’ way.
“You know, it’s part and parcel of job,” he continued. “Obviously it’s not nice if they’re shouting bad stuff at you but they pay their money and they are entitled to say what they want.
“But I think we’re going to have a good relationship, I think I’ll show them something different that maybe they’ve not had before or maybe lacked before. I just want to bring that quality on the ball and give them something to smile about, little moments of magic like that [Saturday] and hopefully we can do many more of them over the season.
“I spoke to a few lads and they said that the first game is going to be big, it’s going to be busy, it’s going to be loud, the atmosphere is going to be good. Hopefully I’ll be able to make by proper debut on Saturday and hopefully score another.”
Mahoney is setting his sights high this season. “I’ve said before that this club can’t go and spend millions and millions on players like many of the other clubs, but what we do have is work rate, hard effort and we put the hours in on the training ground.
“If we can’t match teams in the quality department we’ll definitely match them in hard work and graft. So I think a top-half finish would be a successful season but if we’re in and around that by Christmas or February then why can’t we go and push for the play-offs and, you know, dream? That’s what I’d like to be a successful season this season.”
Image: Millwall FC