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Kelly: “I Expect A Response From My Players.”

3 September 2015

Manager Darren Kelly is expecting a reaction from his players ahead of Saturday’s Sky Bet League One clash with Bradford City.

Latics were dumped out of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy in the first round stage on Tuesday night after goals from Liam McAlinden and Tyrone Barnett sealed a win for Shrewsbury Town.

With the manager making changes to his starting 11 due to injuries, he has been given a boost ahead of the weekend but wants a better display from his players.

He said: "I do expect a reaction because losing hurts. I felt it and I go away and reflect on the performance and reflect on myself, asking whether there was anything more I could have done. 

"Winning is great. Losing is apart of the game but we’ve had that winning feeling where it is great but Tuesday we had the losing feeling and that is horrible. 

“It is about getting the fire in the gut because I know if we perform the way we can, we will more than match anybody and I fully expect a better performance against Bradford City.

"I was disappointed for the fans who turned up. I think about everything they give up to support us home and away and I was disappointed on Tuesday. That hurts me, and it hurts them.

"We want to give the fans something on Saturday and get the winning mentality back. We want to give them something to shout about and get them vocal and loud.”

Saturday’s visitors Bradford City won their first game of the season last week, lifting them to 16th position in the league.

“The table is false at the minute, especially in these early stages,” admitted Kelly. 

"I know what Phil [Parkinson] is about and I know what Phil’s teams are about and they are a very good side. We have to be on the front foot and take the game to them on Saturday. 

“It is a home game so I have no doubt if we can produce what we did last Saturday against Bury and a little bit more, I think we will be alright.”

A couple of players were ruled out of Tuesday night’s game with niggly injuries but the 36-year-old has had good news regarding one of those ruled out. 

“Carl [Winchester] was training last week, was fine but did a little extra after training and tweaked his groin,” he admitted. 

“He will be back in the squad hopefully as he trained for the first time today and will train tomorrow."

Watch the full interview on Latics PlayerHD.

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