Izale McLeod’s only goal is to keep Crawley in League One

Izale McLeod scores for Crawley Town against Barnsley (Pic by Jon Rigby) PPP-150214-160732004
Izale McLeod scores for Crawley Town against Barnsley (Pic by Jon Rigby) PPP-150214-160732004

The only goal Izale McLeod has set himself this season is enough to keep Crawley in League One.

A superbly-taken hat-trick on Saturday – the second of his career – saw the Reds’ top scorer fire them to just their second win in 17 League One outings.

Fifteen goal McLeod, however, has not set himself a target this year, stressing he will just hit as many as he can to fight off their relegation woes.

He said: “I am just taking each game as it comes. I am really pleased I am getting goals as it gives the team more of a chance to win and whatever I end up with I am just taking each game as it comes.

“I speak to the gaffer all the time. Daily he pulls me to one side and gives me little tips of position I can run into, how to score, how he did it and that is obviously going to help as he was a really good goalscorer on his day.

“We have never once started thinking that we couldn’t get out of it, but we know we need to be more consistent and that’s the key to it.

“If we are consistently picking up results then I am sure we will get out of the trouble we are in.”

On his form this season, he added: “I am really pleased, I feel when I have been getting chances this season I have been calm in front of goal and taking them.

“Obviously I am disappointed if I don’t hit the target or make the keeper work, but that’s what I try and do. I work hard in training on it and it’s paying off.

“When you are down near the bottom confidence is not as high as you’d like it to be, but we just need to try and grind results out.

“We are not playing free-flowing football, but we need to try and get to that stage slowly and surely. It’s going to be a long process, but we believe we can and if we keep playing like that we are going to keep creating chances in a game.

“When you score five goals it’s not even just us, teams around us in the league are going to see that and know we are going to be no pushovers.

“When they come to play us they are going to be wary and it does the team and the boys a load of good as well.”

McLeod’s treble is the first by a Crawley player in the League and moves him to within two goals of becoming the club’s leading league scorer in a season.

Dean Saunders has backed his frontman to fire himself into the Championship if he keeps up his fine goalscoring form.

He said: “I said to him, get 20 this season and you’ll go up a league. He’s got to do the other side, when people come and watch you and pay a transfer fee for you, they are looking at all the other things; your hold-up play, your brain and setting goals up for other people.

“They will look at all that. He has to do all that and get the goals if he wants to go up a league.

“He was clinical and every time he got it I thought, goal.

“He can play higher up, it’s still not too late for him, he has bumped into me and I can help him. I played in his position.

Looking ahead to Saturday’s clash at Swindon, McLeod added: “We are down there and fighting for our lives so we will go there (Swindon) of the back of this result full of confidence, obviously knowing and respecting they are a good team at the top of the league, but we have to go there, put our game across and hopefully come away with something.”