The Opposition View: Coventry

Last updated : 11 April 2011 By Jim Bonner

Coventry fan Jon Spencer answers the questions I put to him ahead of tomorrow's encounter.

What do you make of the current financial situation at Coventry? Are you worried that you might follow in Pompey's footsteps and enter administration in the future?

For a time it was quite worrying as the future of the club was pretty uncertain. There was a point where I had heard from people at the club that we were going into administration so I was all set for the news to be announced. Thankfully nothing came from it and we haven't had to experience anything as dramatic as we did 3 years ago.

The future quite uncertain, we're losing a lot of money each year and unless we get to the Premier League I can see our problems only getting worse. We're all hoping that at some point the owners will buy the stadium and then we can start to move forward.

How concerned are you about the possibility of your club getting relegated this season? If you survive, do you think you'll be the favourites for the drop next year?

I'm sure we'll be ok this season, there is a bit of a gap now and we've still go to play
Scunthorpe and Middlesbrough. I'm confident that we can stay up this season but I'm not so sure about next season and we'll definitely be favourites to go down.

We're likely to lose key players like King, Westwood and Gunnarsson when their contracts run out at the end of the season. We may also be in danger of losing other key players as obviously we will have to sell to cover some costs. I'm hoping that the fans will really get behind the team next season.

Do you think Aidy Boothroyd deserved the sack and who would you like to replace him?

I'm completely split on this one. On the one hand I was so fed up of the boring football that I had to witness each week and I longed for Aidy to change it so that we could have a different type of threat and I'm glad that since he has gone we have seen some better football on the eye.

However, I didn't feel he should have been sacked, we're known for sacking managers too early and it never helps us. It's a bad cycle and it needs to be broken at some point. My ideal choice to replace Aidy would be Di Matteo but if he isn't interested then maybe a lower league manager like Paul Tisdale.

Marlon King is a controversial figure in football. What did you make of his signing?

He is very controversial and I must admit if we went back about twelve months and you asked me whether I'd like him to sign for my team I'd have said no. Whatever people think of him (and I'm not overly keen on him myself) he has the right to carry on his career as he has served his time. I'm pleased he's at the club at the moment as he's a class above every player in our team. I don't think he's been too bad while he's been here and he's concentrated with his football which is all we can ask. I'm glad we signed him but his wages are huge.

What are the biggest strengths of this
Coventry team?

This is a very difficult question. I'm going to have to say centre midfield. We have quite a few players that can play there like Carsley, Gunnarsson, Clingan, Deegan and Baker who can all do a fairly decent job there. It's not as good as I'd like it to be but it certainly is our best area.

And the biggest weaknesses?

The wings, easily. We've had McSheffrey, Baker, McIndoe and
Bell all take their turn out there and none of them have done enough. They're all pretty slow and struggle to beat a man. We rarely score goals from crosses and that's down to them. I'm hoping we'll get a few pacey wingers in for next season.

Pompey have recently been criticised for playing too many long balls. Do
Coventry also play this way due to Boothroyd's previous influence or has the quality of football improved since his departure?

We've actually changed quite a bit. Andy Thorn our caretaker has got us playing with much more freedom and the passing and quite movement is great. It may not be quite like Barcelona yet but it's a lot better than under Aidy. Long ball can be effective with the right players at the right time but if you don't have that then the chances are you'll be in for a fairly dull experience.

Predict the outcome of the match.

I expect us to compete and perhaps get a 2-1 win with two goals from King. We're playing with much more confidence and we're due and away win.