Captain looks ahead to Stevenage matchExeter City captain Scot Bennett explained that a great run of results in Sky Bet League 2 in recent weeks has instilled confidence in the Grecians’ dressing room.
The Grecians travel to Broadhall Way to face Stevenage on Saturday looking to make it ten games without defeat in the league, and to consolidate a place amongst the play-off positions.
Conversely Stevenage are four games without a win in all competitions and have seen their prospects of bouncing straight back up to League 1 growing slimmer.
Bennett felt that the confidence in the camp and the positive results were feeding off each other.
“When you’re on the run we’re on, all you can do is go in confident,” Scot explained. “The boys are flying high at the minute.
“There’s a lot more banter flying around the changing room – last year when we were in the position we were in, you come into training and you’re not as happy as you want to be because you’re disappointed with results.
“So when you’re flying high and getting results like we are at the minute, it’s a big confidence boost. The team is just on a massive high.”
One of the more telling factors in recent weeks has been Exeter’s ability to adapt to the game as it unfolds by concentrating on playing their own game well.
Scot also commended the team’s ability to hold what they have in good situations, and to rescue unlikely-looking points from bad ones.
“We go into training on Friday and we’re told a few things about the opposition and how they like to play, but we don’t concentrate too much on that – they need to come out and worry about us,” he explained.
“We want to play the football that we like to play and then hopefully we can go on and beat them. That’s working at the minute but we’ve got to keep working hard and pushing on.
“Things are going right at the minute – we’re getting some of the luck we need and we’re also holding onto victories instead of throwing them away.
“We had a tendency last year where we would concede a late goal, or we’d be a goal down and that would turn into two or three. Now we’re so confident that we’re going to score goals, and we’re not overly concerned with how many we’re going to concede because we’re so confident that we can score.”
The game in Hertfordshire opens a busy period of games during Christmas for Exeter in which matches follow each other in quick succession.
Scot is hopeful that the team can continue their recent momentum into the New Year to put themselves into a strong position going into second half of the season.
He continued: “The games come thick and fast, which is a good thing when you’re on a run like we are. We’re looking forward to the next couple of games and hopefully we can keep getting points.
“I think with a good Christmas period and you’re there or thereabouts, and you hope to kick on through January.
“The next couple of weeks are going to be a big part of the season for us, so hopefully we can pick up points like we’re aiming to do and hopefully make sure we’re not on the losing ends of any of the games.
“So long as we’re drawing or winning and points are coming and we’re climbing the table – that’s the main thing.”
Bennett’s start in the 2-0 home victory against Carlisle was his first since having to be withdrawn injured against Newport County AFC.
Like Scot, Liam Sercombe is back in contention to play following a week out injured, and other absentees are also back training including Jordan Moore-Taylor – who hobbled off at Coventry – and Jamie Reid, whose niggling long-term injury has seen him make just two substitute appearances in the last 12 months.
“No manager having to tell people that they’re not in the squad, but at the same time it’s good to have the headaches that Tis is getting with the people that are coming back and the team doing so well,” explained Scot.
“There are so many people fighting for places which is good for the team – especially when you’re in the team, you know you’ve got to keep going and working hard to make sure you keep your spot.
“It’s brilliant to see the likes of Reidy coming back after about a year out with the injury he has had. To see him out on the football field in reserve games has been brilliant.
“He didn’t quite make the cut [against Carlisle] but to see him in the matchday squad and in the changing room is a massive boost for us.”