Nathan Delfouneso believes his hat-trick in Blackpool’s thrashing of Bradford City was “long overdue”.
The forward netted three goals in a game for the first time in his senior career in the Seasiders’ 5-0 demolition of the Bantams on Saturday.
Delfouneso, now 27 years of age, was naturally delighted to claim the match ball but he admitted it’s been a long time coming.
“I can definitely say that it’s been long overdue in my career,” he said. “But I’m delighted to have got it – hopefully I can get a few more.
“I’m just really thankful and grateful for the supply from my team-mates. Obviously I’ve got to be there but thankfully it helped us get three points.
“I’m confident in front of goal so I’ve just got to make sure I’m in the right positions. If I am, I’m confident I will stick them away.
“I’ve got a few awards at home but the match ball will definitely have a special place on my mantlepiece, I can tell you that now.
“I’ll definitely be recording the highlights on TV.”
Two of Delfouneso’s goals came in a first half where Blackpool were utterly dominant, but had to settle for a 3-0 lead at the interval with Viv Solomon-Otabor on the scoresheet.
But Delfouneso claimed his third and Pool’s fourth in the second half, before Sean Longstaff capped off the rout with 10 minutes to go.
“The hat-trick should do wonders for his confidence,” Delfouneso’s manager Gary Bowyer said.
“I’ve just been told that’s his first league hat-trick and in my opinion with the ability he’s got – he’s one of the best finishers at the club – he should be scoring more.
“That’s what we’ve demanded of him all season.
“I’ve signed him three times so that tells you what we think of him, but he’s got to keep doing it.
“I would hate for him – and I’ve said this to him so I’m not talking out of turn – to get to the end of his career and go ‘I should have scored more goals’.
“So that’s the challenge to him and he’s got to do it again against Northampton on Tuesday.
“We spoke to both Nathan and Viv (Solomon-Otabor) this week.
“We felt Nathan owed us a performance after the Doncaster game and Viv a performance after the Oldham game.
“We spoke with Viv about mixing it up and he did.
“He looked to come inside and he did a great chop, and then showed great composure to stay on his feet and slot it in.
“I’m delighted for the two of them but what they have to do, the pair of them, is reproduce that week in, week out.
“It can’t just be one in every 10, or one in every 20, it can’t be for them to get where they want to.”