Two goals the ‘perfect start’ for St Albans City’s new mystic hero Ralston Gabriel

Ralston Gabriel celebrates his debut goal for the St Albans City v Hungerford Town. Picture: Leigh P

Ralston Gabriel celebrates his debut goal for the St Albans City v Hungerford Town. Picture: Leigh Page - Credit: Archant

Ralston Gabriel said he knew he was going to score two goals as St Albans City started their National League South campaign with a 3-2 win at home to Hungerford Town.

The new signing from Haringey Borough pounced twice to become an instant folk-hero at Clarence Park.

But the confident striker knew it was going to happen.

He said: “One of the guys asked me how many I was going to get and I said two.

“That’s the perfect start to be honest and all we could ask for.

“We had to dig deep though but we stuck together and came through in the end.

“For the first I could see the bounce so I thought if I could give the goalkeeper a bit of a challenge, he might scuff it.

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“It fell at my feet and I could see nothing across so I all I could do is wrap it top bins.

“The second was whipped in and thankfully when my first header hit the bar, it came back to me and I put it in the bottom corner.”

Manager Ian Allinson spoke highly of his new man

“He’s just a pest,” he said with a smile. “He doesn’t stop running, he doesn’t stop chasing and putting people under pressure.

“He’s a smashing kid to be fair and he’s got a great work ethic.

“It was difficult before the game. I could have picked any two of the three but I’ve gone with David [Moyo] and Ralston and it’s paid off with Ralston getting two.

“But I could have quite easily played Sam [Merson] today.”

He was concerned with some of City’s defensive work and the way they fell off in the second half, but overall the Saints’ boss was a mixture of relief and pleasure.

He said: “I was really pleased with the performance for long periods. I felt we had 20 minutes in the second half where they caused us a lot of problems.

“Once we changed things around and got our foot back into the game and I felt we played really well in the last 15 minutes.

“We only had two shots on target from 10 shots in the first half and that’s what let us down in the end.

“I was disappointed with how we started the game. We were 1-0 down after four minutes and 2-1 down after five minutes of the second half.

“We’ve got to learn from that and start sharper and brighter because we keep giving teams head starts in this league.”

They will wanto put that into practice in Tuesday when they go to Woking.

Allinson said: “I’ve got to take stock with what I’ve got but I’ve got a squad of 16 and we may have to change personnel around in terms of what strengths they got.

“Hopefully we’ll get the same work ethic like we finished off with.”

It might be worth keeping Gabriel in the squad, with the 27-year-old making another prediction of his goalscoring return.

Two again,” he laughed. “As long as I keep trying to score things will come good.

“It’s buzzing in the dressing room. We just need to work on a few things and sort out a few mistakes and I think we’ll be good going forward into the season.”