Chaplin: My dream moment

Conor Chaplin scores. Picture: Joe Pepler
Conor Chaplin scores. Picture: Joe Pepler
  • Chaplin nets maiden goal in sixth Pompey appearance
  • Worthing youngster has been on club’s books since the age of six
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Conor Chaplin toasted the fulfilment of a life-long dream after netting his maiden Football League goal.

The rookie striker climbed off the bench to score an angled left-foot finish against Morecambe on Saturday.

I just concentrated on my touch and putting it across the goal like every coach teaches you to do, either the keeper parries it and someone gets a tap in or it goes in. Thankfully mine went in

Conor Chaplin

It was nothing more than a consolation for Andy Awford’s side, who slipped to a disappointing 3-1 defeat.

But the 18-year-old’s contribution was undeniably a positive, capping a memorable season for the free-scoring Academy player.

And for the Worthing lad who has been on Pompey’s books since the age of six, it was a goal to savour in his fledgling career.

He said: ‘Scoring that goal is the best feeling I have ever felt. I would have preferred it in better circumstances.

‘But it is something I have grown up dreaming of doing.

‘I didn’t really celebrate, though, we were losing so I just came back to the half-way line and tried to get on with the game quickly.

‘Since I was six I have been at Pompey, it is the only club I have ever played for and to even think of playing for the first-team is something I had dreamt of.

‘So for that to happen in December was a dream come true.

‘And to then actually score my first goal for a club I enjoy playing for is an unbelievable feeling.

‘I didn’t have family present, it was too long a trip for them to come, although they attend every home game.

‘My grandad rang me the night before and was thinking of coming up, but didn’t in the end.

‘But this season I have played youth team, reserve team and first-team and it’s only the start. I have got to work harder next year and hopefully make it into the first-team on a more regular basis, getting starts and getting more game time.

‘I set myself small targets but I’m just trying to help the team be as successful as we can be.’

Chaplin’s prolific season has seen him net regularly for the Academy, while he has seven goals for the reserves.

It earned him a first professional contract in October, the youngster signing until the summer of 2016.

Now he has his first-team goal-scoring moment.

He added: ‘I like playing off someone to get into little pockets and turn on the ball, to run at people, to feed balls through, to dribble. That is my position.

‘I can play left, right and up front and before the goal had moved slightly to the left, then Tubbsy laid it off for me perfectly.

‘I just concentrated on my touch and putting it across the goal like every coach teaches you to do.

‘Either the keeper parries it and someone gets a tap in or it goes in. Thankfully mine went in.

‘As a forward player, when you are scoring goals you are confident and that is how I feel at the moment from my games in the Academy and with the reserves.’