Woodgate keen to instil consistency ahead of Coventry clash

AFC Bournemouth Press Conference

Written by Sam Greasley-Machin (@SG_Machin)

Off the back of a successful Easter weekend with wins against Middlesbrough and Blackburn Rovers, Jonathan Woodgate’s side play host to relegation battlers Coventry City this Saturday.

Speaking to the press ahead of the match at the Vitality Stadium, the Cherries boss gave an update on Junior Stanislas who missed the win against Rovers on Easter Monday through injury.

He said: “He hasn’t been well, he’s been working with the physio so we’ll see what he’s like. 

“My conclusion is that I’m not too sure.”

One player that did return for the trip to Ewood Park was David Brooks, following a six-week absence due to injury, much to the delight of his manager.

Woodgate continued: “I was pleased to have ‘Brooksie’ back, he is a top player.

“He worked hard in them six weeks, he trained the last couple of weeks before the game so he’ll be up for selection.”

Looking ahead towards this week’s opponents, Coventry are 20th in the table with 42 points and fighting to remain in the second division. 

Despite winning only once in their last eleven on their travels, the former Real Madrid defender was keen to reiterate the importance of not underestimating the Sky Blues.

He said: “They’re fighting for their lives down the bottom of the table. 

“I’ve been instiling into my players that they’re going to come here fighting for three points.

“We know what they’ll be like they’re a decent team, they play good passing football. We have to really inflict our game against them.”

With the Championship being a notoriously tough division, Woodgate was eager to emphasise how crucial consistency is; even against those teams towards the bottom of the pile.

He continued: “This league is that inconsistent at times, anything can happen. 

“We have to not be complacent and be consistent to perform how we should. If we do that hopefully we win the game.

“But we know it’s going to be a difficult game, as every game is in this championship you can’t think it’s going to be easy because it’s not, it’s going to be difficult. 

“That’s what I’ll be instiling in the players.”

Currently, Bournemouth sit seventh in the table, a point behind Reading in sixth and three points behind Barnsley in fifth – who have both played an additional game over the South Coast side.

With only seven games to go until the conclusion of the 2020/21 season, the pressure is mounting in the race for the play-offs.

Woodgate continued: “The pressure is on every team fighting for the play-offs right now, we just treat the next game as the most important one.

“We’ll do what we do and if we win all our games we’re in there.

The advantage that Bournemouth, perhaps, have over their play-off rivals is the experience.

Both in terms of playing in the Premier League, but also promotion in the case of Steve Cook and Adam Smith – which could be all the difference.

Woodgate added: “There’s a couple in there (who’ve been prompted) we’ve got a good squad who are playing well at the minute. 

“The mentality is good, I’m enjoying it.”

Bournemouth kick-off at 3pm on Saturday at the Vitality Stadium against Mark Robins’ Coventry; with the game available to watch on iFollow.