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Bali Mumba steals the headlines with astounding solo goal as Plymouth beat Huddersfield

Bali Mumba steals the headlines with an astounding solo goal as Plymouth Argyle beat Huddersfield Town to open the season in style.

A bumper crowd at Home Park watched as goals from Morgan Whittaker, Bali Mumba and Ryan Hardie gaveSteven Schumacher’s Argyle a winning start to life back in the Championship.

It was attacking midfielder Bali Mumba that got plenty of people talking, making his way from the left to cut through the Terriers’ defence and beat keeper Lee Nicholls with a well-placed low shot on 74 minutes.

Summer signing Morgan Whittaker had put the Pilgrims ahead on 6 minutes awhen he netted from close range, however Huddersfield got one back in first-half stoppage time thanks to Michal Helik.

With the away side going close, Argyle fought back and Mumba’s individual goal made it 2-1 to Plymouth Argyle with 17 minutes left.

Whittaker then sent Ryan Hardie through on goal and finished with ease.

Argyle: 21 Conor Hazard, 2 Bali Mumba (19 Tyreik Wright 90+3), 4 Jordan Houghton, 6 Dan Scarr, 8 Joe Edwards (caps) 9 Ryan Hardie (23 Ben Waine 89), 10 Morgan Whittaker, 11 Callum Wright (18 Finn Azaz 89), 17 Lewis Gibson, 20 Adam Randell (7 Matt Butcher 83), 29 Kaine Kesler-Hayden.

Substitutes (not used): 25 Callum Burton (gk), 16 Lewis Warrington, 24 Saxon Earley, 34 Caleb Roberts, 35 Freddie Issaka.

Booked: Edwards 88

Huddersfield: 1 Lee Nicholls, 2 Rarmani Edmonds-Green, 3 Josh Ruffels, 4 Matty Pearson (6 Jonathan Hogg 42), 5 Michal Helik (capt), 10 Josh Koroma (22 Kian Harratt 84), 11 Brahima Diarra (30 Ben Jackson 77), 14 Sorba Thomas (26 Pat Jones 77), 16 Tom Edwards, 25 Danny Ward.

Substitutes (not used): 12 Chris Maxwell (gk), 15 Jaheim Headley, 17 Brodie Spencer, 27 Kyle Hudlin, 33 Yuta Nakayama.

Steven Schumacher was pleased with what he saw, saying: “From the moment the Janner song came on and the adrenaline starts going, the noise that the crowd generated today, there’s nothing better,” said a happy Schumacher after the game.

“It’s brilliant to get off to a great start. We’ve got three huge points in what was a really tough game, played in horrific conditions. Credit to the players for going out there and getting that win for our fans.”

“It wasn’t one of our conventional goals,” said Schumacher, of Morgan’s goal. “I would say it was a little bit of a scrap, a mistake possibly from Huddersfield, Morgan’s in the right place at the right time and capitalises on it.

“It was a brilliant start for us, got us going, but as the first half wore on Huddersfield grew into the game and were quite strong. They finished the half really well and managed to get one back.

“It would have been easy for our players’ heads to drop, but we just said at half-time: ‘well done, you’ve done well, you’ve competed with Huddersfield who are really physical, and let’s go out in the second half and try and be positive again.’ Thankfully, we did that.”

Of Mumba’s solo effort, Schumacher said: “It was a great goal. It was a nice little move as well. Kaine [Kesler-Hayden] picked up a brilliant position; something that we’ve been working on in training throughout the off-season.

“It got Bali the ball and when he’s faced up 1v1 like that against players, he’s difficult to stop. He went past his marker, and it just opened up for him. It was a brilliant goal, and it came at a good time because the game was on a knife edge. It probably could have gone either way.

“The third goal was a brilliant goal too. It wasn’t a pattern of play that we created, it was Morgan doing his defensive duty.

“He nicked the ball off one of Huddersfield’s midfield players, and produced a brilliant throughball, which we’ve seen him do before. Ryan Hardie dispatched it, and that gives us a bit of breathing space that we needed.

“We speak to the players all the time about being clinical with the chances that you get, because if you don’t, then good quality teams in the Championship will punish you.

“We created two good moments when our crowd was up and we had momentum in the game. We were clinical.

“[Whittaker, Mumba and Hardie] are up and running in the Championship, at a new level for them and they’ll only grow in confidence. They all believe in their ability and we back them 100%, that’s why we worked so hard to bring Bali and Morgan here, and why we worked so hard to keep Ryan. If I’ve got players like that on the pitch, who I know can score goals, then as I say, I think we can, we can compete at this level.”

Huddersfield’s Neil Warnock: “You have got to take your chances. We had three great chances. It’s fine margins really. It didn’t surprise me that the two wide lads won it for them because we made mistakes against them.

“I thought we had nullified them but we didn’t. They win the games with their goals. When you look at goals throughout the season there will always be an aspect of disappointment.

“You can talk all day but it’s one game gone and we got beat. It’s a game we should have won. If Jack Rudoni’s free header goes in and Josh Koroma scores then you win the game.

“You can do something at 2-1 but you can’t do much at 3-1. You can coach all day long. If you don’t take your chances you don’t win your games.”

Here’s what fans are saying as Bali Mumba steals the headlines with an astounding solo goal to help Plymouth beat Huddersfield…

@BurntHedges: Argyle won more games than any other team in all 4 leagues last season. Mumba was an important cog in that machine. When they lost Ennis to blackburn I was worried the core of last season’s team would be lost but they’ve secured a few since then and I think they’ll surprise some.

@UTM_Mariners: Some boy, @BaliMumba8 👏🏽👏🏽

@george_perrett: He’s absolutely gorgeous to watch, makes football look so easy

@Quiggers_03: Impressive goal but that is some God awful defending !!!!

@StuGreeny: Love him

@_wisemensay: Watching the highlights of Plymouth yesterday and how good is Bali Mumba. Knocks me ill that we sold him for pennies

@garwood_hayden: Bali Mumba is a joke of a player, 1 million was an absolute steal #pafc

@ConnorJ2399: That Bali mumba for Plymouth is absolutely class by the way

@JimmyBann: Bali Mumba at @Argyle looks like some player. Electric.

@Justpula: Had a great day yesterday watching Argyle. Bali Mumba is an absolute baller. The atmosphere was electric. What a win and what a start to The Championship campaign.

@MeDoyle88: That Bali Mumba goal for Plymouth was unreal

@steviebwoy: Bloody love this guy! Thanks Norwich!

@jkaealdinho: Going to make Plymouth serious 💰💰💰

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