The Dugout - Ladies' First Team: Issue 20Date: 05 April 2019 at 12:40 by Liam Cook
Coventry United Manager Jay Bradford takes a seat in the Dugout, as she discusses the victory over Oxford, and Sunday’s visit of QPR, as the title race intensifies.
Liam - Wednesday night saw Coventry wrap up a 2-0 win over Oxford United. Was the performance as satisfactory as the result?
Jay – Yes, I think it was. We played with a nice quality about us, but we also showed the character needed to grind the result out when Oxford looked to apply pressure late on.
Liam - After losing the unbeaten league record on Sunday, was this the perfect response?
Jay – Yeah, of course. At this stage we are looking for results, the performance is an added bonus. On Wednesday we got the right balance.
Liam - Another goal for Beth Merrick, her 6th in 11 appearances since her move from Sheffield. Has the winger lived up to your expectations thus far?
Jay - She's improving in every game she plays in. She is exciting on the ball and makes things happen. I knew what type of player I was getting when I signed her, it was just a case of how long it would take her to settle in to the group and adapt to the staff at Coventry. Credit to Beth, she has adjusted quickly and we are seeing the benefit of that.
Liam - QPR are one of two sides in the Southern Premier yet to register a league win this season. Surely a United win on Sunday is the likely outcome?
Jay - On paper, maybe. Football is a strange game and you can never say a result is guaranteed. QPR have improved drastically over the last few months and we will need to be ready for the challenge if we are to remain on task.
Liam - A tough run in awaits, with a Cardiff double-header and a trip to Plymouth. Would a big win against QPR result in a boost of confidence for these games?
Jay - I think our confidence levels are spot on. We are focused and ready. Whether that means scoring lots of goals or grinding out 1-0's, the aim is simple, and that’s to win games from here until the end of the season.
Liam - United have the best goal difference, and the fewest goals conceded in the Southern Premier. With 5 clean sheets out of the last 6 games, are shut-outs now expected?
Jay - We pride ourselves on clean sheets, as staff and players, so of course they are important. I also think it’s the manner in which you concede and whether as a group we did enough to prevent conceding. Keeping a clean sheet is a team task and I think we are at a point where every player understands that. Gone are the days when your centre-forward could just stand on the half way line and wait for the ball to be played near them to try and score, they have a job off the ball which is of equal importance to the task on the ball.