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Dave Barton

Dave Barton writes

Posted Monday, September 17th 2018

Dean beholden to squad effort

Dean Holden saluted a whole squad effort as City head to West Bromwich Albion on the back of a winning start to their three-games in seven-day schedule.

City play the Baggies at the Hawthorns tomorrow (Tuesday, September 18th) before travelling further north to face Wigan Athletic on Friday (September 21st).

And buoyed by four successive victories, including Saturday’s 1-0 win over Sheffield United at Ashton Gate, assistant head coach Holden says the Robins are in a positive mood.

“Morale is high around the changing ground as you would expect but we are not getting carried away,” said Holden.

“Even early in the season, when we drew the first two games, it was about what we did next, in training sessions and preparation going into the matches, and it’s been the same throughout this winning run - and that won’t change.”

City started 3-5-2 against the Blades and switched to 4-4-2 with substitutes Callum O’Dowda and Marley Watkins creating and scoring respectively.  

“Selection is an interesting one because we have such a good squad now with strength in depth,” explained Holden.

“We have won the last four games but the gaffer has changed the team around a little bit as well. So we know we can replenish the energy levels in certain positions when we need to and the lads coming off the bench have all perfomed very well. That’s a by-product of the fact that they have been training properly every single day. When the games come around and you have not been in the team but you have been training properly, you feel that bit sharper.

“Full credit,not just the lads going out there and getting the wins, but it’s the whole squad, the lads who have been keeping them challenging for their places in training. Even the lads out injured at the moment have been working very, very hard behind the scenes and hopefully in the not to distance future we’ll have a fully fit squad.”

HOLDEN PRAISES AWAY SUPPORT

City’s last away game saw them win 1-0 at Swansea City and Holden is hoping the travelling supporters will be in a full voice against another recent Premier League opponent.

“Myself and the gaffer went to watch West Brom in Birmingham on Friday night and going forward they are very dangerous – we have to be on our guard defensively,” he said.

“It’s incredible when we take such a large following away from home, the effect it can have on the players, even in the warm-up before the game hearing the fans singing. I am sure they are happy with the results we are getting and, with their backing, hopefully we’ll get over the line on Tuesday night.”