FOOTBALL: MARK Robins was full of praise for striker Marc McNulty after his opening goal helped guide the Sky Blues to a 2-0 win against Grimsby.
The 24-year-old, who signed for the Sky Blues in May, scored his first competitive league goal for the club on Saturday – though it didn’t come without its controversies.
McNulty took control of the ball after Nathan Clarke played the ball back to his goalkeeper after a free-kick was awarded.
But when Clarke’s pass appeared to be the taking of the free kick, McNulty was quick to react and soon rounded Grimsby’s keeper to put the Sky Blues ahead.
Despite protests from the home side, Robins didn’t see anything wrong with the goal and said it was a bright piece of play from his Scottish forward.
“They were incensed by it but we did not really see what was wrong,” said Robins.
“He went around the keeper and stuck it into an empty net. What we saw was Nathan Clarke put his hand on the ball, played it back to the goalkeeper and the referee has deemed that as the taking of the free kick.
“Once we had got the goal, Marc was brighter than anyone else on the pitch and he showed us what he has in his locker.
“He grew into the game and got into some dangerous positions. He and Beavon worked together really well.”
Robins was also quick to praise his side’s desire to win Saturday’s second league game, the first away trip of the season.
A second clean sheet means the Sky Blues are yet to concede this season – and they’ll be hoping to continue that trend this Saturday when they face Newport at home.
Robins said: “Their desire was evident throughout the game.
“For about 35 minutes of the first half we were just giving the ball away so we were trying to play longer football and sometimes you need to do that to settle down.
“I think we will grow. We certainly did in that game and for the last ten minutes of the first half we were on top and I could really sense a goal coming.
“Coming away from home for the first time is a test but we have stood up to everything that they have thrown at us and grew into a game. It was a really good away performance.”