The Manager's notes for today's programme
It has been a good week to be an Oxford fan with the win over Swindon in midweek and I hope you all left the ground on Wednesday with big smiles on your faces and enjoyed work, school or college the next day.
We certainly enjoyed the evening but we were straight back on the training ground at 10.30 the next day and already making preparations for today’s game against a very good Exeter side. Paul Tisdale has done a good job down there and they will be looking to take advantage of any slip we make today because they know a side is sometimes vulnerable after a good cup win.
We have to make sure there is no ‘Lord Mayor’s Show’ performance today, but I would hope not from this group of players who have such a strong team spirit and such belief in each other. If you look back to Wednesday and see Tony Capaldi, Tom Craddock and Alfie Potter all play key roles you can perhaps see what big misses they were for much of last season. And you look at James Constable and JP coming into the side, or young Daniel Boateng making his debut, and you see players hungry to do well and seize their chance.
It is fantastic as a Manager to know you have everyone in the squad totally together and ready to come in and give it everything when they get a chance. To still have selection choices to make, even without the likes of Michael Duberry, Peter Leven, Liam Davis, Harry Worley and Andy Whing is great, and we hope to have Deane Smalley and Sean Rigg back in contention today after they missed Wednesday’s game.
There was a lot to be pleased with on Wednesday. Tactically we changed things around a little but the principle of staying disciplined and organised remained the same. I thought the way we stuck to our guns was first class and the players deserve enormous credit.
On reflection what probably pleased me the most was the way we reacted to the defeat at York. That was our first loss in the league and having bowed out of the Capital One Cup the week before we wanted to see a positive performance and to see players react in the right way. I thought they did that magnificently and the heart, commitment and desire were very evident from everyone in Yellow.
I also thought that your support drove us forward and played a massive part in the win. We have players here who love the big occasion and can handle the white-hot atmosphere that you can generate. We thrive on your support and the energy between the fans and the team is a big part of why we continue to move this club forward.
We are under no illusions that today’s game will not attract the same degree of passion as that cup game, but it is actually much more important to us in the long run and so we will approach it in the same positive fashion and do our level best to lift you to your feet and give you something to roar your heads off in support of once more.
We worked hard to get that win on Wednesday, let’s all do the same in search of another three points today.