|Job||xxxx Football Coach|
|Org||xxxx National Team|
|Club as Coach||Oxford FC [Head Coach]|
2020 07 03 Retrieve
[Portsmouth and Oxford played out a 1-1 draw to leave their League One play-off semi-final on a knife edge] I think the referee had a great game. Just as players have struggled, they’ve not refereed or officiated for a period of time either. But Marcus Browne got fouled six times by one player in the first half. By the letter of the law, that’s a booking. If I was Portsmouth, I’d be disappointed as I felt they should have had a penalty in the first half when Rob Dickie got hold of one of their players around the back. Other than that, I thought it was two honest teams trying to find the way in a difficult game
2020 07 07 Retrieve
[Oxford secured their place in the League One play-off final after a dramatic penalty shoot-out victory over Portsmouth on Monday night] I’m just full of admiration for the players. We’re in the final, what more can you say? When you think that I’ve had to sell my two best players in January and we came into this game with three or four struggling with injuries, it’s incredible
I had asked a few people in the game who have been in big penalty shootouts for their advice, and they passed that on, and through our sports psychologist too who was telling the players to be composed and just believe in themselves.
I’m just gutted for our fans who couldn’t be here to celebrate it, and I’m gutted there wasn’t a full house in here to see this. But for Oxford United to be in the final is unbelievable
2020 07 12 Retrieve
[Oxford have turned down the chance to visit Wembley before Monday’s League One play-off final] It’s something they preferred not to do. I don’t know whether Wycombe are going. If they do they may think we’re being arrogant by not going, but that’s certainly not the case. I just know that we feel when we turn up on Monday we’ll be ready and that’s the most important thing. Wembley’s always special and a place that creates memories, but the best time to use your phone is after the match. And if you don’t get that chance to celebrate, and take pictures, then you don’t deserve that chance. There’s no right way, there’s no wrong way; this was just the choice of my players
[Asked if Wembley can retain its magic without the fans] It’s Wembley, I’ve cried there, as a fan I’ve enjoyed winning there. I’ve been there and won as a coach, and I’ve had many, many memories going there for different reasons. And it’s always special. It is the home of football. If you ever get bored with going to Wembley, even if there’s nobody there, then you don’t like football. Of course it’s a much better place full of people, supporting and cheering, but we’re really looking forward to this
[He also paid tribute to his group of players and recognised both they and Wycombe stand on the cusp of a special achievement] I’m immensely proud of all my players and they know what they mean to me. They know that I’ll always be there for them now, for the rest of their careers, I’ll always be at the end of a phone. It’s a relationship I have with all my players. There’s players at the top level who still phone me and ask things. And it’s purely because when players wear a shirt for a football club or play for me, and they show me the respect by the way they conduct themselves with each other, I’ll always be there for them throughout the course of their careers.
2020 07 13 Retrieve
[Wycombe reached the Championship for the first time in their 133-year history after beating Oxford 2-1 at Wembley] We didn’t deal with the throw-in that led to the opening goal but from then there was only one team in the game. We were under no pressure whatsoever. In the second half we were very good. I thought we moved the ball efficiently, broke lines, created opportunities
We have a lapse in concentration and the rest is history - that’s football. Weirdly, that’s equally why we love it just as much as we hate it right now. We will take this on the chin; you have to show respect to the opposition. But my players are devastated and I feel for them