Paul Mullin is good. Super, even.
His hat trick was so casually brilliant last Saturday that we made Elliot Lee man of the match up in the commentary booth.
It was only afterwards that I questioned the decision, when I weighed up the fact that, apart from his three beautifully-taken goals, Mullin had teed up a number of good chances with his alert use of the ball in the box, terrified defenders with his pace and gone close on a couple of other occasions.
Not that Lee’s hypnotic dribbling, work rate and superb goal didn’t deserve the recognition; it’s just that we clearly took another superlative Mullin performance for granted!
He already has 20 goals this season, a remarkable feat. Who gets to that figure in November? It’s hard to believe that three seasons ago no Wrexham player scored more than six goals!
The sheer variety of Mullin’s goals is proof of his ability. His hat trick illustrated his versatility: the first was a predatory affair, lunging in to strike in a flash as the ball flew across him; the second was a reward for his running off the ball; and the third was a superb piece of improvisation.
Mullin scores a lot of goals because he’s capable of scoring many types of goal.
It always felt unfeasible that we’d ever have a player who could challenge the records of Wrexham’s supreme goal scorer, Tommy Bamford. It’s premature to suggest that Mullin will do so, because Bamford stands head and shoulders above even the prolific likes of Gary Bennett, Andy Morrell, Albert Kinsey and Dixie McNeil, having maintained a phenomenal strike rate over 5 and a bit seasons.
However, it is fair to point out that Mullin’s first year and a half at The Racecourse has matched Bamford’s remarkable standards. His first goal against Farnborough was his fiftieth for Wrexham in his 67th game. That’s only one game slower than Bamford managed.
He’s been a little bit of a reverse-Ugarte this season. Famously, the little Basque striker made a remarkable impact in the second half of the 2004-05 season, slamming in 26 goals with 4 hat tricks peppered in amongst them. Yet only two of those strikes happened at The Racecourse.
Mullin, by way of contrast, is the king of LL11. He’s scored 17 goals in 13 games on home turf, but only 3 in 11 on our travels. Of course, that’s not a bad strike rate, but if he can get start to replicate his home strike rate when we’re away, he’ll really start threatening Bamford’s records.
And why shouldn’t he? They don’t call him Super Paul Mullin for nothing!