Sean Maguire is feeling confident after notching a first half hattrick in the opening pre-season game of the 2018/19 campaign.
The Irishman finished as PNE’s top scorer last season, despite spending four months sidelined through injury, and he carried on his form from May.
As a forward, he 24-year-old feels that confidence is key to good performances and three goals in just 45 minutes will have certainly given his confidence a further boost.
Speaking to PNE.Com, Maguire said: “It’s great to feel confident for any striker. Strikers live and breathe on confidence.
“To score, not just one goal, but to come away with three goals in the first 45 minutes of pre-season is brilliant and long may it continue.
“We’ve got another five games in pre-season and we’re looking to do exactly the same in the upcoming weeks.”
Maguire was a penalty box predator at the Sir Tom Finney Stadium, picking up three of our seven unanswered goals on the day from inside the Brig penalty area.
Maguire believes that’s where fans will see the best of him, but he’s also looking forward to playing with new teammate – and provider – Graham Burke more regularly than just with the national side.
“I could have had four or five today but I think that’s when you see me at my best. Just six, seven yards out where the ball is drilled across the box, making those runs across the near post.
“Lucky enough I just had the simple task of putting away Daryl’s brilliant ball in and Josh put one back where I could put it in the bottom corner.
“It’s great to just get 45 minutes today; and coming in alongside Burkey [Graham Burke].
“I thought he did brilliant today and its better for him, for his confidence, getting a goal today.
“The more he gels with the boys in training and matchdays like these the better he’s going to get.”
After being sidelined for a long spell last season and picking up an injury with the Republic of Ireland, Maguire has put in the work in the gym and he’s delighted with the rewards he’s reaping.
“These pre-season games are only about getting the match fitness up and getting your match sharpness back.
“I got injured during the off-season away with Ireland and I’ve worked really hard in the gym, particularly in the lower part of my body, getting my hamstrings strong and today it felt great.
“Today it was just about getting the first 45 minutes under the belt and to put on a display like we did was just a perfect start to pre-season.
“When the referee called it on 25 minutes for the drinks break I honestly thought there was only a couple of minutes left! But that’s part of pre-season.
“We’ve had a tough eight or nine days and to cap it off with a first 45 minutes is brilliant, to get those minutes in the tank. We will have the day off on Sunday, which is well deserved and then we go again on Monday.”