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💬 Matt Taylor: "We have got to put the pressure and expectation to one side and go out and play a game of football."

City boss on Saturday's crunch match with Forest Green Rovers

2 May 2019

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Exeter City manager Matt Taylor says his players are in a good mindset going into this weekend’s final match of the regular season away at Forest Green Rovers.

The Grecians need to record a victory at the New Lawn and hope that Newport County don’t win at Morecambe to claim the final Sky Bet League Two play-off place but, on the back of a morale-boosting win against Oldham Athletic last time out, as well as a good performance in a 1-1 draw away at Stevenage the game before, the players are in confident mood.  

“We go into the match confident on the back of the Oldham game and the Stevenage performance and the players are in a good mindset,” said Matt. “It is always slightly different with the last game of the season. We know what is riding on it. We know what we have got to do and hopefully results elsewhere go our way. We have got to go and try and win the game. 

"That might not be in the first minute of the match but we have got to give ourselves the opportunity to win the game. We might have to stay in the game at time and be competitive, but generally our form away from home has been pretty decent of late.” 

Forest Green Rovers have already qualified for the play-offs though and have won their last two matches at the New Lawn.  

“It is always a difficult place to go,” said Matt. “I think we ended up playing them four or five times last season, so it is probably a group of players who know each other quite well. 

“It is a relatively local game as well in terms of our fans. It is one we have got to look forward to. We have got to put the pressure and expectation to one side and go out and play a game of football and hopefully enjoy that game of football. But we will only enjoy it if we are successful.” 

Ryan Bowman is also on form going into the game. The City striker was nominated for the Sky Bet League Two player of the month for April having scored five goals in six matches during the month.  

“We have said time and time again that his performances have warranted more in terms of goal rewards, but centre forwards are judged on goals,” said Matt. “I think he has now got five in five, so it is a good return and it is up to the rest of the team to keep supplying him the service he needs to finish off those chances, but he is a handful.  

“He has just got to keep concentrating on working hard, keeping his game simple and being effective for the team.  

“His workrate has been absolutely outstanding. He is quite mobile for a big lad and we are pleased that he has come into some form and some form at the right time as well. He has got to stay level headed, despite getting nominated for awards, but he has been a plus for us.” 

City are expected to take 1,300 fans to Forest Green Rovers on Saturday and Matt praised their support.  

“They always travel well, certainly locally, and at Forest Green we take over one side of the ground,” he said. “I hope for them it is not raining because in recent seasons we have gone there it has been pretty wet and we have got absolutely soaked through.  

“I am sure they would sacrifice that for three points though and hopefully we can give them that.”


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