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Interviews

INTERVIEW: Liam Kelly West Brom Preview

Captain looks ahead to Baggies test...

3 December 2021

Sky Blues skipper Liam Kelly gave his thoughts on what he believes will be an emotional day for the City as fans come together to remember John Sillett.

The match with West Bromwich Albion is City's first since the legendary manager’s passing and Kelly recalled the time when Sillett met the squad ahead of the Wembley final with Exeter City three years ago.

“Once that whistle goes it is full focus on the game but before that everyone is going to remember John and pay their respects to him as that is only right for someone that has done so much good for this football club and the City

“Everyone is fully aware of how much of a club legend, I remember before the Play-off final we had a meal and he said hello to all the boys and spoke to the staff quite a lot.

“It was great for him to come out of his way before the Play-off final to have a meal with all the players and staff, the little touches like that as everyone was aware of what he had done for the football club and hopefully come Saturday we can get a result for him as well.

“That will be a part of the motivation of what the lads talk about as it will be an emotional day for many fans and if us as players can go out there and put on a performance to please the fans and in remembrance as well.”

Turning to the game, the Sky Blues have scored nine goals in the final ten minutes of matches or later which has played a big part in their strong start to the season with Kelly believing it is down to the ‘competitiveness’ within the squad that City keep grinding out results.

“It’s something that’s not even just been this season, I remember the season when we were promoted from League One the amount of late goals, we had to pick up a point or three points was a regular occurrence and I probably put it down to how competitive the squad is.

“In our training sessions, even on a Friday, we have a little tournament going and it is incredibly competitive and that is how the game felt that last ten minutes at Bournemouth away, we were chucking absolutely everything at it, full energy, full quality in the final third, just trying to get something out the game.

“We know ourselves in the last ten minutes we are a dangerous team and if we need a goal, we are a confident we are more than confident of doing that.

“Our home form has been fantastic and apart from the Luton game I think we have been in with a chance of winning every single game and I think that just goes to show how far this football club has come and how competitive.

“It’s not just being competitive on a Saturday, that is how it is throughout the whole weeks’ worth of training, so we know come Saturday we are more than a match for anyone and leave absolutely everything on the pitch to get the three points.”

With both sides currently occupying a place in the Play-offs, Kelly expects a tough game from the Baggies, but he is looking forward to the atmosphere that will be generated by the Sky Blue Army.

“I think going back to the Birmingham game when you look at that atmosphere and how much of a good occasion was, all be it a 0-0 draw, but the atmosphere was terrific.

“Hopefully the fans can recreate that on Saturday afternoon but that only happens if we are playing good football and we have high energy and we go out there to win the game.

“I don’t expect West Brom to come here and settle for a draw, they’ll absolutely be looking for a win as they want to get promoted back to the Premier League at the first time of asking.

“We expect a difficult game from a strong, physical team who are looking for their first win in a few games so we need to make sure we are fully prepared, we’ve worked on it today our team shape and how we can best hurt West Brom as we want to win, we are not going to be settling for a draw at any home game this season.

“We’ve set the bar high this season and I don’t think it is a surprise to anyone in this building how well we have done because we have seen how good the quality is on the training pitch and how good the home form has been so far this season.

“We will be going in there, putting pressure on ourselves to preform to the best of our ability as that is the only way we’ll be able to get a win.”


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