Ross Hannah admitted there was an element of relief after his injury time goal salvaged a point for Chester FC at rock-bottom Torquay United.
Having been sidelined with a recurring calf injury, striker Hannah stepped off the bench with 15 minutes to go at Plainmoor and expertly finished Tom Shaw’s flick on in the 91st minute to snatch a point in Devon in a 1-1 draw .
With pressure mounting on manager Jon McCarthy owing to Chester’s poor start to the season, Hannah’s late strike ensured the Blues went home with something to show for their efforts, although a clash with a managerless Gulls side missing seven first-team players and who had lost their previous six coming into the game was one that Chester would have hoped to have gleaned maximum spoils from.
Hannah admitted that it had been a ‘tough week’ for the players and acknowledged that performances had been below the standard required in the National League.
“Yeah, in a sense (there was relief),” said Hannah, who netted his first goal since returning to the club in the summer.
“But we have got winners in that dressing room and the lads know, we’re not sugar coating it, the performances aren’t at the standard of the lads in there.
“It’s been a tough week for us as players. It is the nature of the game, it’s results based. We showed on the pitch how much we want to play for the gaffer, the club and the fans.
“We do have to take as much responsibility as the gaffer. I don’t think we’ve all been at the level that we should be.
“We came here to win the game but not to lose it is just important. We have to take that into Tuesday and get a positive result.
“We’ll go into Tuesday with the same mentality, looking to win the game. We’ll hopefully get the three points and take that into Saturday and get this home win that we want to get sooner rather than later, and that we are all trying to get. It’s important that we all stick together.”
Hannah’s return to action came even sooner than he anticipated.
A calf strain picked up in the pre-season opener at Runcorn Town in July saw him sidelined until the season opener against AFC Fylde. And he would suffer a recurrence of the same injury during the first half of the 3-2 defeat to Sutton United last month.
But after receiving some outside help with his injury, Hannah was delighted to be back on the pitch and back among the goals.
“It sums it up, me scoring in injury time,” he said.
“It has probably come a week earlier than I expected. I thought it would be similar timeframe when you’ve done it again.
“These two guys from Myokinetics in Chester got me in, had a look at me and got me into a good mindset and a great physical shaoe which has given me the chance to come back a week early and make the bench, which is a massive bonus. The plan was always to come on for the last 15 minutes - and score.”