5:22pm Wednesday 30th January 2013
FORMER Redditch United hitman Matt Smith believes his giant-killing heroics in the FA Cup are all the more sweeter because of his non-league experience.
The 22-year-old plundered a memorable double to inspire League One Oldham Athletic to a 3-2 victory over Premier League giants Liverpool in the fourth round.
The Evesham-born striker is still coming to terms with his cup heroics after a brace that will be part of the Latics history.
“I am still on a high,” he said.
“To score twice against Liverpool, the feeling is just indescribable.
“This is the biggest moment of my career. I am just so happy for the club and the fans, it’s a brilliant result.”
Smith had opened the scoring only for Uruguayan international Luis Suarez to level the scores, but Smith headed in a second before the break to hand the Latics a 2-1 lead.
Former Bromsgrove resident Reece Wabara added a third two minutes after the break and despite Joe Allen’s late deflected striker, Oldham booked a fifth round clash against another Premier Leagie big-hitter in Everton.
The brilliant brace marks the culmination of Smith’s efforts. After being released by Cheltenham as an 18-year-old, he featured for Stourport Swifts before playing for Redditch United in the 2010-11 campaign.
He then joined Droylsden while studying in Manchester, but was loaned back to the Reds.
Smith caught the eye of Latics boss Paul Dickov while playing for Solihull Moors, who signed him for Athletic during the summer of 2011.
“Helping Oldham beat Liverpool is all the better because of where I have come from,” said Smith.
“It’s a unusual path but it means all my hard work has been worth it and demonstrates there are good players in non-league who deserve a chance.”
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