TWO days before it was revealed he was set to join Scunthorpe United, Billy Kee said he did not want to be labelled as Burton Albion’s ‘super-sub’.
After never previously scoring as a substitute for the Brewers, Kee did just that three times last season, and did it twice in one match on Saturday to rescue a 2-1 victory against Dagenham & Redbridge.
He said: “I think sometimes, when you are coming off the bench, it breaks it up a little bit.
“And when the team breaks up, you get those chances.
“It’s a lot easier coming on in games rather than starting – you get more chances, that’s just the way football is.
“But that’s what I don’t want. I used to be a super-sub and I don’t like that any more.”
Burton did eventually make it three wins from the opening three games of the season, but were taken all the way by the Daggers, Kee scoring in the 84th and 88th minutes after coming on to replace Dominic Knowles as manager Gary Rowett switched to a 4-3-3 formation.
Kee became the focal point of a front line that also included impressive new signings Lucas Akins and Stuart Beavon.
“You’ve seen them play – Bevs is a quality player and Lucas just goes, he doesn’t seem to stop,” he said.
“That’s the way they are, they’re very good players and anybody would enjoy playing up front with them.
“The 4-3-3 can work, and the gaffer has changed things.
“We look a dangerous team however we play, and that’s what we’ve been working on all pre-season.
“The gaffer has said how he wants us to go forward and how he wants us to change things in the middle of the game.”
Kee admitted Saturday’s slog was not quite of the same calibre as last Tuesday’s League Cup giant-slaying of Wigan Athletic, but was proud of the never-say-die attitude of his Brewers team-mates.
“When you play Wigan, it’s all exciting and it’s a big game,” said the 23-year-old.
“Then you come back down to the league, but that’s what it’s all about, and you’ve got to have that consistency to do it week in, week out.
“It was scrappy, but a lot of League Two teams make it like that, it’s not about you playing like that.
“I think that showed the character of the team this year.
“You can see what the lads are about – we kept going and kept going and eventually got our rewards.
“It wasn’t pretty in the first half, but it shows what the gaffer has got us about this season.
“The gaffer knew what he wanted us to do, and at half-time he pushed it a bit.”
Kee also said penalty decisions evened themselves out on Saturday.
The Burton Albion striker scored from the spot after Marcus Harness tumbled down in the area under Luke Howell’s challenge, and while he was not entirely convinced that was a penalty, Kee said that the tackle moments earlier by the same Daggers player should have been a foul.
“I thought that was a penalty, because he came right through the back of me when I’m watching the ball,” said Kee.
“Then Marcus has done well to come on and get the penalty, which could have been a bit harsh on them, but that’s what happens in this league.
“That’s what it’s like in League Two. It’s very hard for a ref to see these things.”