Aaron Connolly expressed his delight at getting on the scoresheet in Brighton's final game of the season, admitting that it would have been tough heading into a new season without a goal since October.  

Connolly slotted home the second half winner for Brighton in their 2-1 win away to Burnley at Turf Moor. 

It was the Galway-born striker's third goal of the season, having hit the headlines with a brace in the 3-0 demolition of Tottenham back in October. 

Though Connolly has often impressed in the intervening period, upsetting defences with his pace, setting up the winner against Arsenal and winning an early penalty away to Leicester City [which was missed], he wasn't able to rustle the net himself until Sunday. 

"I don't know how long it’s been so it’s great to be back on the scoresheet and to get three points makes it even better," Connolly told the Brighton club website.

"Personally, it will help me a lot going into the new season. It would have been tough not to have scored since the Tottenham game so I’m delighted."

Brighton hovered just above the relegation zone prior to the pandemic break but crucial wins over Arsenal and Norwich City saw them survive with relative comfort in the end and they went into the final weekend already assured of safety. 

"We thought we'd done enough to go in at half-time ahead so to get the goal so soon in the second half lifted us," the attacker added.

"Since the lockdown we have approached each game the same and I thought we showed the right attitude again here.

"We have put in some good performances in recent weeks and it's a good way to finish the season.

"But we're all looking forward to a break now to recharge our batteries. The new season isn’t far away now."

Allowing for fitness, Connolly will likely be part of Stephen Kenny's Republic of Ireland squad for the upcoming Nations League games against Bulgaria and Finland in the first week of September. 

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