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Luke Williams' Pre-Oldham Athletic Press Conference - The Key Points

17 February 2017

Town Head Coach Luke Williams addressed the local media earlier ahead of his side’s Sky Bet League One clash against Oldham Athletic at The County Ground on Saturday. Here are the key points from the press conference…


ON ROHAN INCE’S RETURN AFTER HIS SUCCESSFUL COURT CONCLUSION:


“I’m delighted for him and it is a huge weight off his shoulders.


“I was involved in a similar type of scenario as a young man. I was a victim of an attack and I don’t think you quite realise how much it weighs on you until after the event and I think Rohan has just discovered that himself.


“He probably didn’t realise the stress that he was carrying on his shoulders, he dealt with it very well and he probably felt like he put it to the back of his mind, but it is there and I think now he can really focus on having a strong finish to the season for us.


“There’s a sense of relief about him but of course with the situation we’re in at the football club, there’s another intense environment but he’s a professional and he’s absolutely prepared to deal with that.


“I’m delighted for him to have that off his shoulders.”


ON JERMAINE HYLTON:


“There is obviously a disciplinary action needed and we’re dealing with that in the football club and we will know the direction we’re going in once we’ve had a chance to assess things.


“We can then make that known at that point but for now we’re just going to continue to sort out the matter in-house.


“As things stand he’s not available for selection for Saturday but there’s still time and things can change quite quickly, so we have to do what we think is right.


“It is more than just me making the decision. We’ve got a Director of Football and we will make sure we do what we think is right by the entire squad – this is a matter for the entire football club and not just one individual.”


ON THE NEED TO ATTACK:


“We need to be more aggressive going forward and of course we know that then leaves some more difficult defending scenarios, but we were in a difficult spot last year and the message to the players was very, very clear that we were going to outscore everybody and I think we went through a period where we looked hell-bent on scoring a goal for the 90+ plus minutes that we played every week and we successfully did that many times.


“It is something that we’ve got to do again and we need to win games of football.


“Being too cautious is not a good strategy for this particular group of players, and it is similar to the group we had last year, because we’re more of a threat when we are attacking than we are when we are soaking up pressure and trying to counter or play for set-pieces.


“That has got to be our style and our stance.”


ON THE NEED TO CREATE MORE CHANCES FOR NICKY AJOSE:


“We have to supply Nicky, and Jon Obika and Luke Norris as well, but Nicky has gained a huge amount of trust from us all, from the fans and the staff and the players that have worked with him, and we know that if we supply Nicky correctly then he will score.


“We’ve got no doubts about that and neither has Nicky and if you spend any time with him he will absolutely convince you that he can score goals, so we have to improve the supply, we’ve got to be more aggressive going forward, we’ve got to be quicker going forward and to supply the front players is our route to success.”


ON DECIDING WHICH LOAN PLAYERS MISS OUT TOMORROW:


“That is a very difficult decision and it is not something that I take lightly, so I’ve had to think long and hard about the team selection and then try to make the players aware as honestly as I can about the reasons why I’ve made certain decisions.


“Then we have to go and try and win a game.”


ON WHAT TO EXPECT FROM OLDHAM ATHLETIC:


“John Sheridan is a fantastic manager and he always gets the best out of this group. He will make sure that, first and foremost, they defend because if they come here and get a draw then that will be good for them, but he will without any shadow of a doubt have a strategy to try and inflict damage on us as well.


“I expect them to be very, very tight defensively, I expect them to work extremely hard and they will have a game plan to try and undo us at the back if we fall asleep or if we make mistakes. If we’re not clean, then they will try to capitalise on that.”


ON EVERY GAME BEING A MUST-WIN:


“Every single game is a must-win for us and if we go out with any other intentions and we try and settle for a draw then it is no good.


“When we went in-front against Oxford, the mentality was wrong and it was that we thought we could just defend onslaught after onslaught – it is not the group to do it, unfortunately.


“That is the reality and they have been told they have to keep attacking teams over and over – it is the best form of defence for this group.


“We equalised the other night against Northampton and conceded almost immediately and they have to play on the front foot to try and keep scoring, to outscore the opposition and to force them backwards by attacking them.


“We have to go into the game with that attitude and that mentality that every single game is a must-win and we have to score lots of goals to ensure that.”


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