** PLEASE NOTE: This interview was conducted prior to the Ayr match. Vaughan’s record is now 14 goals in 11 appearances **
Raith Rovers forward Lewis Vaughan has praised his team-mates after the striker won the SPFL Ladbrokes League One Player of the Month for August, scoring 13 goals in 10 games for the Kirkcaldy club.
Speaking of his delight of his first ever Player of the Month award, 21-year-old Vaughan told KingdomFM last Monday afternoon:
“The boys have started well this season. Everyone has played well individually but we have also done well as a team. Credit also has to go to the gaffer and his backroom team – we are up there for a reason, the league table doesn’t lie and long may that continue.”
After a frustrating season for Vaughan last term, has the consistency of regular games with Raith aided the strikers form to flourish?
“Possibly, yeah,” agrees Vaughan. “After a serious injury like I had, it gives you a massive knock psychologically and physically. I feel that I am over that now and I am back to my best: I put the work in during pre-season and the physio, Stuart Phin, has been immense since that moment I got injured with me personally. He has fone everything and anything I have needed The other thing is obviously the gaffer and his two assistants – Kevin Cuthbert and Scott Robertson = who fully believe in myself and I think I am repaying them with my confidence.”
Vaughan has a started this season on flying with 13 goals in 10 matches, in all competition, beating the totals of the last two top scorers in this division, Andy Ryan (5 in 10) and Faissal El Bakhtaoui (12 in 10).
“I never expected to get 13 goals in the first 10 matches of the season,” says Vaughan. “I wouldn’t be where I am though without my team-mates; for example, I think Bobby Barr has assisted more than half of my goals so far, so, that just shows the team work that goes on behind the scenes. You may get an individual accolade, but, this is a team game and I wouldn’t be where I am today without this team. I appreciate everything that they have done. I’ve set myself a target [of goals scored by Vaughan this season] but I will keep that to myself right now. It is the most I have scored in one season, although, I haven’t really had a full season, as such: I have missed a whole season injured; I have been sent out on loan…hopefully I can get a full run of games this season, stay injury-free and hopefully that allows me to help shoot this club back to where I feel it belongs.”
Vaughan has made just over 100 appearances for the Rovers and he hopes to keep racking that number up as the season progresses.
“Niall, the Raith Press Officer, told me that last week that I had hit 100 appearances for the club, so, I am delighted. It has been very enjoyable. Promotion has to be the main goal this season. A club like Raith Rovers is far too big to be in League One; we are full-time and with the squad we have got we could be in the top 6 of the Championship, I have no doubts about that. Hopefully this season we can get automatically promoted and be back in that division next season.”
Speaking of his positional change since the new management team have came into Stark’s Park, the attacker replied:
“I have changed position this season – I am playing a bit deeper with Spencey [Greig Spence] and Buchs [Liam Buchanan] playing up front, but, I think I have adjusted to that position, coming in from the left and getting shots in and I think when you are confident, you will score more goals too. I hope it [9 game consecutive streak of scoring] does continue and it isn’t just a lucky streak – as I have said already though, without my team-mates, I wouldn’t be able to score – I recognise some of my goals are individual efforts but the majority are down to my team-mates and it is them who are doing all the hard work, I am just finishing it off. Hopefully I can keep that up.”