'I feel so attached to the fans... this means the world to me' - Bonne on his debut goal
- Credit: Steve Waller - www.stephenwaller.com
Macauley Bonne’s dramatic late equaliser was a dream come true for the Ipswich Town-supporting striker.
It’s a goal which has been years in the making, with Bonne celebrating by kissing the badge on his chest after raising the roof off a stadium packed with the former Chantry High School pupil’s family and friends.
“I’ll take that all day long because, even if we were 3-0 down and I’d scored, I’d have probably celebrated like that because of the pure fact of how long I’ve waited to do that,” he said. “I’m over my moon.
“To have all my family up in the crowd - my brother, my missus, my mum and dad, my mates, they’ve all seen me come through the academy here and play at Playford Road every week as a kid and then go through the ranks somewhere else.
“But to finally come back and do it is a massive circle and it feels brilliant.
“I’ve sat here for so many games and seen last-minute winners or equalisers and I felt like I was part of that (the celebrations in the stands) when all the fans were screaming because I’ve been there and know what it’s like. I feel really attached to the fans and it means the world to me.
“I had friends up here, there, there and there (pointing to all four corners of the ground). I think I could have looked around Portman Road today and been ‘I know you, I went to school with you, I see you’ and things like that.”
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When asked how he felt on the touchline, as he prepared to come on for his Ipswich debut, Bonne said: “My only thought was to go and score a goal. I was thinking ‘I’m here now, I’m not going to waste any more time and I’ve waited so long for this moment, so I’m going to make the most of it.
“The ball fell perfectly in my path. I gave the defender a stiff arm and then there was a pause where I felt like it was made for me to go and score the equaliser. I can’t put that into words.
“I came back for pre-season with a lot to do because I didn’t play too much at the end of last season and I had some catching up to do to get to full match sharpness. The backroom staff and everyone at the club have helped me get to where I am today and I feel over the moon.”
Bonne’s goal rescued a point from a game where Town twice trailed to Cole Stockton goals, with Bonne insisting his side were worthy of at least a point.
“We gave away two sloppy goals and if you scrub them out it’s a 2-0 win,” he said.
“We’ll work on all of that. It’s the first game as a new team (and it wasn’t going to be perfect right away) but once we get it all together teams are going to come here and fear us.”