Player-manager Brayson toasts team despite his hat-trick in win

Paul Brayson.
Paul Brayson.

Newcastle Benfield player-manager Paul Brayson rifled a hat-trick in his side’s 3-1 win over Ashington on Saturday.

However, as the Tynesiders enjoyed a successful afternoon at Woodhorn Lane, the boss lay aside personal glory and instead praised his players.

“Considering this was our first game for eight weeks, I thought it was a great team performance,” he said.

“Coming to Ashington is always a tough proposition and I can’t remember getting many results here, so to emerge 3-1 winners was excellent.”

Brayson was delighted by his side’s start to the game.

The 38-year-old said: “We began brilliantly. We moved into a 2-0 lead and maybe should have scored a third before Ashington got one back.

“They probably put a bit of pressure on us at the end of the first half but I was over the moon for us to go in at half-time 2-1 up.

“The second period produced a tight game which could have gone either way with both sides having chances, but the sending off made a difference. It was a big decision and probably got us the win.

“We added the third which obviously killed the game off, but I couldn’t have asked for any more from the lads.”

Newcastle-born Brayson has plundered goals throughout his career, and the seasoned campaigner is looking to add more to his tally.

“Obviously the win was the most important thing, and to get a hat-trick was the icing on the cake for myself,” he said.

“The third was the killer but the second was the pick of the bunch for me.

“Mark Turnbull has put the ball through to me then carried on his run which took the defender away and I side-stepped a defender and goalkeeper Conor Grant before putting the ball into the corner.

“It’s always good to score goals, that’s what I have done ever since I started playing football, and my target is to score as many as I can and I hope to go on a good run until the end of the season.”

As for his new managerial role alongside Mark Convery, Wideopen-based Brayson said: “It’s different but it’s been enjoyable and things have really gone as well as they could.

“Even though we lost away to Bishop Auckland, we should have got something out of the contest as we were the better team second half.

“After taking over, Mark and myself patched a team together early doors because we had that many injuries and players away.

“Obviously with this break, everyone is back fit and we’ll be a match for any team on our day.”