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WHITNEY PRAISES MAKRIS AFTER FIRST SADDLERS GOAL

10 April 2017

Striker netted our opener against Oxford...

Jon Whitney was full of praise for Andreas Makris after the striker scored his first Saddlers goal in the 1-1 draw with Oxford. 

The Cyprus international opened his account for the club on 47 minutes with a stunning left-foot half-volley which bounced in off the bar. 

And Whitney was delighted to see the 21-year-old break his duck. 

“It was important he had a run of games,” said the 46-year-old. 

“I knew he was ready a couple of weeks ago. I could sense it in him when he came back from the international break. 

“He was unlucky last week at Bradford and he worked really hard before his goal. 

“I thought he occupied them first half and ran the channels really well. He made his own goal and that was his reward. Hopefully, for all of us, it’s the first of many.

“Credit to the kid. I think the relief sucked the life out of him – he was dead on his legs after that so we had to change him. 

“But it was just a matter of time for the kid to get settled and get his goal. And it was a great goal, not just a tap-in. It was a really good goal.” 

Makris’ opener was cancelled out by Chris Maguire’s deflected 74th-minute equaliser – but Whitney felt a draw was the right outcome. 

“It was a fair result - we will both be happy with a point,” Whitney added. “The way they finished the game, Michael Appleton probably thought they could have sneaked one. 

“Their goal was a bit fortuitous but I think with the effort they put in, you make your own luck. 

“I thought we might have gone on and got a second but they were always going to get 10-15 minutes where they put us under pressure. 

“But the first half, that was how I want my team to be. The energy, some of the football we played. We were really effective, limited their touches, broke really well and could have scored two, three goals. 

“First half, I thought we were the better team. They could not live with us. Second half I thought they were so a point is a fair result.”

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