Richie Wellens called for a reaction after some ‘home truths’ were delivered to his players this week following back-to-back defeats against Carlisle and Stevenage.
After a run of eight games unbeaten gave Wellens’ side an outside chance at the play-offs, two defeats in four days has reduced their chances with the Robins sitting seven points outside the top seven.
Port Vale are the visitors to the County Ground, with the home side unbeaten in two at SN1. The Valiants have won their last two games – against Mansfield and Yeovil.
The Swindon boss is expecting a response from his side:
“We seem to be playing against everyone who runs into a little bit of form – it’s about us, we’re at home. I want high energy, back to where it was against Colchester, all around the pitch. I want three points and in these two home games it’s an opportunity to get six points.
“When you’ve lost two on the bounce you want to be at home and you want a team that isn’t in the top six so it’s a good opportunity to bounce back. We will start quick because the players have had a few home truths since Tuesday.”
Wellens spoke out on what he expects from his players, and also what they should expect from him for the remainder of the season:
“If a player’s not playing, I don’t expect them to be happy. They can ask me why they’re not playing, but listen to the response. Sometimes with modern managers, you’re the only one who can really criticise them – Mum and Dad won’t do it, their agent only says good things so as a manager you have to tell them home truths at times.
“It’s not to kill them but to actually say to them, this is where you are and this is what you need to do.”
And with the celebrations of Town’s greatest achievement taking place on Saturday, the 38-year-old hopes his players will rise to the occasion.
“It’s a good thing because the atmosphere will be better, even more than it has been. Things that have gone in the past should be celebrated, especially when it’s such a huge achievement. I think the players should embrace that.
“We need to bring the good times back and right that the players should know what’s gone on in the past so we can emulate what’s gone on before.”