Two goals from Brett Williams put United on track for a vital three points yesterday, but it was United’s third that may have stood out the most, especially to the scorer, Jordan Lee.
Lee joined the club on loan in mid-January, and soon made his debut against Woking at Plainmoor. United lost 2-1 on the day, and Lee was substituted in the 57th minute. The tough start to his loan spell would have stopped many a young player in their tracks. Instead, Lee refocused his efforts on getting a starting place in Kevin Nicholson’s starting eleven.
“In training I was doing well and eventually the gaffer has given me a chance with some games. It’s paying off for me and him, I believe,” said Lee.
Lee’s return to the first team culminated in a first goal of his career against Braintree, and Monday’s match seems to have left a lasting impression on the 20 year-old.
“It was a great game to play in,” added Lee, “and the decisions made in the first half galvanised the team. It gave us the confidence to go out and win it. Brett did great for his two goals and for me to finish it off with my first goal in professional football was the icing on a terrific performance from the team.
“It was a very special atmosphere in the ground yesterday. All the fans were behind us, and the Gaffer. It really gives us as a team and extra kick.
Lee was a constant danger during the match, and Braintree’s ‘keeper Sam Beasant foiled at least two chances that came his way. His first goal in professional football is something he’ll remember.
“It was a great feeling. I had a few chances in the game which I really tried to put away but I kept knocking on the door and it eventually came off for me.
Normally a right-back, Lee has found himself on the right wing recently. It isn’t too different to what he is used to.
“Normally at Bournemouth I play as a wing-back, so it is similar to way I have been playing recently. I’m quite comfortable going forward and I don’t mind tracking back and defending.”
Young striker Ruairi Keating also played his part in Monday’s win and Lee and Keating have become friends since the Irishman joined in February.
“It’s important to have a good relationship with your teammates,” said Lee. “Ruairi and I bonded quite well and stuck together on the training pitch and off. It’s about sticking together as a team and seeing these last two games out.”
United take on Dover Athletic on Saturday in another high-pressure match. Lee is confident that the team is ready to take the challenge on.
“Definitely, after Monday’s game we’re up for anything. With the drive we have got we will hopefully stay up.
“It is my first loan move so this club will definitely stay with me throughout my career in football. Although I am at Bournemouth, Torquay is still teaching me a lot about the competitive game. Hopefully, at the end of the season I can take a lot back with me to Bournemouth and show them what I am about.”