Words: ACFC Media
Thursday 12 August 2021
AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Reid Drake had no qualms passing up the opportunity of a hat-trick last week as he underlined the importance of team over individual targets.
The 25-year-old midfielder scored two top quality goals in last week's win over North Shore United and had he chance to get a rare treble but instead watched Angus Kilkolly step up and score.
Drake says it was crucial the Navy Blues stepped up after their tepid Chatham Cup exit in Wellington 10 days ago.
They did that by drubbing the only team to beat them in the league this season North Shore United, 4-1.
"I was obviously happy to get among the goals but the most important thing is our team is winning. It was a good win to get back on track after our setback at Miramar Rangers.
"The Cup exit was heartbreaking and not where our club wants to be and the standards we set for ourselves - thats what hurt the most.
"Football is football and you might win or lose but we were disappointed not only for ourselves but mainly for the club.
"The Chatham Cup is a trophy we always want to win so it was good to bounce back and give a performance everyone at the club can be satisfied with.
"It was important we hit back with a win and that's what made me most proud of the win overall," he said.
Drake's emergence as a key figure at Auckland City FC is reflected in him fast approaching the 100 game mark and adding goals to his bow is an exciting feature of his progress.
He downplays that aspect of his game and prefers to focus solely on how City are progressing.
His first goal, a well placed volley, was hit crisply into the net and to see it land gave Drake a lot of satisfaction.
"I'm happy to score goals personally but the team scored four and that's what matters most.
"I tried something similar last week and it turned into a bit of a dud so I was happy to make a clean connection this time and get the result I wanted," he said.
The opportunity for a hat-trick comes along only rarely and while most of Kiwitea Street was egging him on to take the penalty, Drake was far happier to see Angus Kilkolly step up.
"I would've liked to have taken the penalty and it was offered to me but its about the team first as far as I'm concerned and I'm not bothered about scoring a hat trick.
"Angus has been in great form this season but not among the goals recently and its important to me that he's firing as well.
"I'm happy with two goals, I could've had a hat-trick which would've been nice, but I'm happier with the points and the win and that Gussy got on the scoresheet," he said.
v Wellington Olympic, 11 March 2023, KO: TBC