After two goals and an all round good performance, little surprise that Aleksandar Mitrovic was at the heart of the post-match conversation.
Dancing on the pitch after the final whistle, with fans singing along to Mitro’s on Fire (Freed from Desire) played over the PA, the striker was clearly in his element.
Only his third start of the season in all competitions, little wonder that the Serbian international was enjoying every moment.
There was much talk about the incident when Matt Ritchie won a penalty early in the second-half, designated penalty taker Ritchie preparing to take it – only for Mitrovic to desperately try and get the ball off him. The winger refused and eventually the diminutive Christian Atsu dragged Mitrovic away and he stood away to the left side of the penalty area apparently sulking, as Ritchie slammed in the spot-kick to make it 3-0.
However, the former Anderlecht forward described the moment as him simply being desperate to score goals to justify his role as a striker, that becoming so difficult with so little time on the pitch.
Mitrovic claimed he was happy for Ritchie when he scored and preferred to talk about the ‘magic in his left leg’, with the Scottish international putting in a quality free-kick for the Serbian to open the scoring.
A game that had pretty much everything, especially for Aleksandar Mitrovic.
Aleksandar Mitrovic speaking to NUFC TV:
(At the final whistle ‘Freed from Desire’ (Mitro’s on Fire) was played on the PA and Mitrovic danced on the pitch)
“It was really amazing, hearing almost the whole stadium singing my name, really something special.
“All my heart is happy for them and I don’t have words to explain this. I hope to keep scoring goals and give them something back.”
The first goal:
“We already know he (Matt Ritchie) has magic in his left leg. He put a great ball in and that was the time to score (Mitrovic header for first goal).”
The penalty incident – Mitrovic trying to get the ball from Matt Ritchie:
“I want to score as much as I can because this is my job and I haven’t played from the beginning for a long time – any goal is a good goal.
“He scored and I am happy for him.”
Mitrovic’ second goal to make it 4-0:
“It’s not a normal Mitro goal, with my head or in the box…this was something different and happy to score. I think I showed to myself and to others I can score different goals.
“A very nice goal and I’m very happy, happy for the team with some very good (recent) performances and great support.
“We are very happy, good performance, we know they have a good team, good quality, and it was hard in the beginning – but after we scored the second everything was much easier.
“Saturday though will be much harder for sure.”