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Burnley Preview | The Manager

July 25, 2018 6:29 pm Author: AFC Media Team

Tomas and Tommie

“Delighted to get both lads in because we all know the difficulty of getting players signed and over the line. Tomas Cerny was one that we reacted to a situation where our young ‘keeper (David Craddock) got injured in a game through the week, but we were always looking to bridge that gap between Joe Lewis and our younger one’s anyway.
“That was accelerated with the injury and part of the process in letting Danny Rogers go out and get games at St Mirren and that experience meant there was a gap to be filled and thankfully we’ve managed to do that pretty quickly and swiftly. I’m delighted to get Tomas in because he’s got good experience for a goalkeeper. It’ll be difficult for him with the level of goalkeeper we have in Joe Lewis, but he certainly gives me and the team that extra bit of comfort with the experience.
“Tommie Hoban is one we’re delighted to get in. It’s a position we’ve been keen to add to and he is a boy that we feel we know and I’m very confident he’ll do very well. We were keen to get him and it looked likely to get him at the back end of last week, it then looked as though it was dead, but thankfully I took a phone call that resurrected the deal yesterday, and I thank Watford for their understanding in allowing Tommie to go out.

“Having got to know Tommie over the last ten days or so in the conversations we’ve had I know how keen and eager he is to be here. He can play anywhere in the back four, but predominately he gives that competition, assurance and size at centre back and I’m delighted to get him in. Of course, along with the bad news that Mark Reynolds may be out for considerable time and he’s got an operation today. It’s good timing because if you look at it we had Logan, McKenna, Considine and Devlin available in the building so it was necessary for us to address that.

Burnley

“We’ve beaten some good teams (in Europe) and when you look at the nature of the league Burnley are operating any team that can finish seventh in the Premier League is a very good side and have to be doing so much right. In their own league they don’t have the resources of others, but it just shows you how well they do operate as a team. I think Sean’s done a brilliant job and the players have responded brilliantly. From that point of view (biggest test in Europe) they’d have to be right up there. Some sort of comparison could be made with Real Sociedad. They had finished seventh in La Liga and when you compare leagues Real Sociedad would be the best team to date that we’ve played in the Europa League. We were very close in getting the result here and a winning performance. There were periods in the second half when we were ahead of them and looking likely to cause a huge shock. We’ll draw on our experiences and whether we’ve been favourites or huge underdogs we’ve always felt we’ve went into each and every tie capable of winning it and that’ll best he case against Burnley.

“They’ve got huge advantages over lots of areas and potentially it could be an advantage (our experience of ties in July) I don’t know, but we’ve had a lot of bigger results or defining results when we haven’t lost a goal at home and won on the road. It’s important that as much as we want to go and impose ourselves on the game as we’re the home team with a sell-out, we don’t want to be out the tie before it actually starts. We want to make sure we’re in the tie when we go to Burnley. We’ll do all we can to get a positive result, so we go there with any advantage.

“Normally when we’ve been undone in Europe it’s because we’ve lost a goal at home and it’s impacted on the outcome. A lot of the best results have come on the road, but we’ve still had good performances at home. It is only half time after that first leg and it’s important we’ve got to either hang on to or get after down at Burnley next week.

“There’s not a huge gulf between the clubs, but there’s a huge gulf between the leagues. Because there’s that gulf the way Burnley operate is a completely different level with the finances and the rest of it. In terms of size of clubs, we’re a very proud club ourselves with traditions and we back ourselves. We’ve got a brilliant support here so there’s no inferiority complex from us as a club. In terms of the leagues of course there’s huge differences but I’m not actually that bothered about what people think of the Scottish league or what the perception is because I just want to win the game. I want to look after the game and do all we can to bring winning performances. That’s all I’m interested in and everything else is all talk and comment on, but it’s not important.

“We’ve always had a confidence in ourselves to get results whether it’s domestically or in Europe. We recognise the challenge ahead of us, we recognise the strength of the opponent as we spoke about, but we also recognise a lot of what’s good about us and I can’t wait for the game to be honest. It’s the first competitive game, which is always eagerly anticipated and thankfully pre-season is over with now. Nobody really enjoys pre-season games as there’s nothing in it. This is the first proper game and the fact it’s against Burnley has grabbed the attention. I just want my players to be able to produce a performance at this early stage of the season and one we’re capable of. Hopefully we can because we’ll be in the game and that’s important to me.

“I think it will be a competitive game. The British game can sometimes be seen as being scoffed at as blood and thunder but there’s more to Burnley than that and there’s more than us than that. There will be a lot of good players on the pitch that handle the ball well. I think in terms of the familiarity of each other I think Burnley will know more about us and since the draw and even before the draw we had an idea of what Burnley are good at with all their strengths. Having watched them closely they’ll be no real surprises. Sometimes signings can be made against some of the European teams late on and you’re scrambling about to find out more about them. We know their players and we know that type and we know what they’re good at. I think it will be more British than what we’ve faced before, but British is good.

Signing update

“Things happened really quickly with Tommie yesterday and I wouldn’t have been able to say with any real confidence yesterday morning that would happen, so you never know. We’ve got a few irons in the fire and are constantly working to try and make the squad as strong as possible for the season. I can’t be railroaded into making signings just for the sake of it because we’re playing Burnley. The window has still got a long way to go, but you never know. If we get a phone call about something we’ve been asking about comes up then we might still be able to register someone in time for the game.

“I know Krystian’s game. Unfortunately for him and us the game against Inverness was cancelled, the game against Cove was abandoned so he’s not had the best of fortunes to be able to show himself. He’s trained brilliantly and has done fine so we’ve invited him to stay longer and play against Arbroath on Sunday and if he takes that offer up then great and it would be a bit clearer on tomorrow.

Team news

“Mark Reynolds is out, and he’s being operated on today and young Frank Ross is out. Scott Wright had a little irritation and complaint on his knee, but he’s trained today thankfully and we’re hoping he’ll be ok as well. We don’t know the timeframe with Mark is yet. He goes to surgery this afternoon in Glasgow and we should have an idea probably in the early evening on exactly how that’s went from the surgeon. There’s enough there to suggest something more serious than what we would have hoped but we’ll wait until the surgeon’s go in and had that look for himself.

“I’ve backed Mikey and I back Tommie to show they’re good players. Injuries are part and parcel of the game and it happens. At this stage of the season that first game nobody’s really in the swing of things and Mikey and Tommie both played games throughout pre-season so they’re on the same page as everyone else. We’ve signed two very good players and if they get a bit of luck as we go along they’ll be absolutely fine.

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