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Sky Blue Thinking

17 November 2016

Fast start the key says United boss

Oxford United look for a little revenge this weekend as they take on Coventry City, just a month after losing to the same side at the Ricoh Arena. The U’s welcome the Sky Blues to Oxford looking to make amends for that 2-1 defeat and Head Coach Michael Appleton is looking for his start to get on the front foot straight away this time around.

“We have to start the game better” he told Yellow Player HD. “Coventry is one of four or five games that have cost us because we haven’t started well enough. Saturday was another example of that. Alright, we lost the last game at home to Millwall after scoring first but it took a worldy from them to get them back into it and then a mistake from us. So starting properly is going to be key. 

“I do believe there won’t be many games this year where we lose after scoring the first goal. So the focus is on making sure we come out of the traps fast.”

 The U’s have been back at Bisham Abbey this week as a break from their usual training base.

“It’s something we have used in the past quite well and Bisham has been good to us in the past” Michael explained.”We know we will get a decent surface here and It’s an opportunity to spend a bit of time with the players, two or three hours together and go through the off field stuff like the standards and culture. The more time you spend together the more trust you build and that’s a big thing in football. Spending a bit of time here will help with all that, going in to a busy time for us.”

Liam Sercombe is the one player not at Bisham after being ruled out for a few months with a knee injury, but having made changes to the side in the FA Cup and Checkatrade Trophy, the United boss is looking for a little bit of stability and consistency from his side who play two home games in quick succession, welcoming Gillingham on Tuesday evening.

“When you go through a little spell like we have been with people getting injuries and suspensions and players losing a little bit of form you have to make changes sometimes but I think there comes a time when you draw a line in the sand and say this is the group of players we are going to stick with for two or three games. 

“As long as we get the type of performance we got in the second half on Saturday I’ll be happy but we just have to make sure that we turn 45 minute performances into 90 minute ones.”

See the full interview plus an exclusive with Simon Eastwood in Yellow Player HD right now.

It’s going to be a great day on Saturday for Military Day. A big crowd is expected so visit or call 01865 337533 to book your place and get behind the U’s.

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