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Neil: no pressure on us

21 April 2017

Assistant manager interviewed ahead of Bradford

Neil Cox says that everyone has to take collective responsibility for rediscovering the team’s goal touch with Tom Elliott still missing for tomorrow’s match at Bradford.

Speaking during an interview for Dons Player, our assistant manager confirmed that Elliott will not make the trip due to a hamstring injury.

“We have one or two knocks and Tom will miss out again, but we will check on the squad and see how we are bearing up before we select the team. It is not all about Tom, even though we’ve obviously missed him in the last few weeks. It is about other players creating chances for our forwards, including the full-backs putting in good crosses, and the midfield players creating. We’ve also had one or two good opportunities from set-pieces, but we haven’t taken them.

“We’ve worked on it in training, but we have been creating chances, we’ve just not been taking them. We’ve been getting in some good areas, but the final ball has been disappointing. As long as we keep getting in there and we keep creating chances, hopefully we will take them on the day.”

The Dons take on a Bradford side unbeaten at home all season with Stuart McCall’s side still harbouring promotion hopes and Neil is under no illusions about the size of the task on Saturday.

However, Neil has been greatly encouraged by Wimbledon’s defensive resilience in recent matches with youngsters Joe McDonnell and Toby Sibbick helping to keep two successive clean sheets.

“It’s going to be difficult because Bradford have a great home record,” added Neil. “They do not concede many at home, they work really hard, and play attacking football as well. It’s going to be a hard game for us to get something, but we are under no pressure, not one bit. We are going to go there to try and get goals because we’ve not been scoring lately.

“Defensively, we’ve done really well recently. We’ve brought one or two young lads into the side with Toby Sibbick and Joe McDonnell coming in and we’ve been solid. ‘Macca’ has come into the side and kept two clean sheets, which is also great for ‘Bayzo’ because he’s worked really hard with him. It’s always difficult when you’ve been a second choice keeper because you don’t play too many games, but ‘Macca’ kept himself fit and sharp.”

Ahead of tomorrow’s final away game of the season, Neil was quick to thank Wimbledon fans for all their support during the League One campaign.

“The players and management really appreciate it,” added Neil. “Going up north to places like Scunthorpe on a Tuesday night is never easy, but we’ve tried to do our best away from home to please them. We are looking forward to the end of the season, but we are also looking forward to next season and going to new stadiums because there is likely to be one or two big teams in the division.”

   subscribers can access the full interview with WDON’s Rob Cornell posing the questions. An extensive interview with Paul Robinson is also on our premium channel. Dons Player