Petrov targets more Villa goals

Petrov is known more for his defensive skills in midfield but he

scored with a stunning strike from distance in Saturday’s 2-2 draw

at Everton. Having netted a memorable goal from almost the halfway

line against Derby in 2008, the Bulgarian admits it was great to

find the target once again in such sublime fashion. He has been

given more freedom to get forward by McLeish and hopes to build on

his latest goal by scoring far more regularly. “It was a nice goal.

People have criticised me for not shooting enough and not scoring

goals but I have now been given a licence to go forward and I’ve

been getting closer and closer,” Petrov told the club’s official

website. “It was great to get a goal and hopefully now I can get a

few more. I don’t do tap-ins – they’re too easy! I only like the

hard ones! “Joking aside, a goal is a goal, it doesn’t really

matter what it looks like or how it goes in – it just matters that

it finds the net. “As I said, I’m looking to score more for Villa

now in the coming weeks and months.” Coming from behind to salvage

a draw against Everton extended Villa’s unbeaten start to the

season, and Petrov credits new manager McLeish for instilling a

never-say-die attitude. “He has been saying to us ‘never give up’

and told us to make sure the opposition know we will always come

back fighting,” explained Petrov. “This is something the manager

has really made a difference with. “I think we showed that against

Everton.” While he was thrilled to battle back for a point, Petrov

has warned his team-mates they cannot afford to start games so

poorly in future. He said: “We never started the game. We were

sloppy. We were slow. We didn’t play our game. We let them play

their game. They put us under pressure. “We were much better in the

second half. We changed it a bit, played two up front with Gabby

and Darren, which created some problems for them. We got a grip of

the game and a good, solid result in the end. “But at the end of

the day we can’t afford to start that slowly and catch up because

in some games it will be too late.”