Head Coach looks ahead to Tuesday's big match
Head Coach Michael Appleton is very aware that Tuesday night’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy game at home to Swindon Town is one that the supporters have been looking forward to for weeks. Local pride is at stake as the U’s look to make it five straight wins over the Robins, and with a full house there will be a fantastic atmosphere at the Kassam Stadium.
“We are very respectful of what the game means to both sets of supporters and the players will be sure of that when they run out” Michael told Yellow Player HD earlier today. “It will be a big crowd and I’m sure the atmosphere will be electric. We want to win the game and then it’s only three or more matches before a Wembley final. If we do beat Swindon then we’re in the hat and not a million miles away from a great day out at Wembley for the fans so we will be playing a very strong side to try and get the result that we need.”
United are likely to be without the two Dannys, with Danny Hylton suspended after his fifth yellow card of the season and Danny Rose hobbling off with a hip problem during the 3-1 win at Accrington on Saturday.
“He’s struggling” Michael said. “He’s a very good player and offers us flexibility because he can play either side of midfield or in the middle but he is still sore because he took a big knock on Saturday so he is a major doubt.”
United have two home games this week, following up the cup clash on Tuesday with an important league game at home to Wimbledon on Saturday.
“We have to be mindful that we have just had two fantastic away results, and that we are unbeaten at home in the league so far” Michael said. “So we will have to look ahead to Saturday and what will be another big test: Wimbledon have some big lads in that forward line, but we aren’t looking ahead to that game just yet. All our focus is on midweek and making sure we get into the draw for the next round.”
The U’s are the underdogs against their League One opponents, despite being in great form themselves.
“I think we are definitely underdogs” Michael told us. “Swindon were one game away from the Championship and have been playing in a higher division for a number of years now. They are a good side and we have to go into the game aware of their strength and their qualities, but I am sure that they will be just away of the strength and quality that we possess as well.”
See the full interview plus the thoughts of skipper Jake Wright and defender George Baldock, all in Yellow Player HD right now.