by Joshua Wilson
SITTING just one win away from promotion USW 3rd are looking to wrap up an overall impressive season.
Having been nominated for ‘Coach of the Year’, one thing that hasn’t gone unnoticed at the USW Sports Park is Rob Bailey’s coaching.
Bailey said: “It’s very nice that someone has thought to do that on my behalf but I’m not a huge fan of individual awards in team sports”. The award nomination with greater meaning to the USW 3rd coach is his squads nomination for ‘Team of the Year’.
“The USW 3rd award nomination appeals to me a lot more as it’s a whole team effort”. This being said the aspect Bailey enjoys the most about the individual award nomination is the fact that someone has thought to nominate him and that his work has been recognised.
When addressing his team’s success so far this season and strategies he has used as coach, Rob Bailey had this to say: “I tend to look for the best group of players I have.” “We have played with the 3-4-1-2 formation season long and we’ve stuck with it”
Undoubtedly every football season has its challenges. When discussing his Bailey said “The university season is unforgiving”.
Despite being hit regularly with injuries season long; his side have been able to prevail through hard times. “we have a good squad depth which has allowed us to cope with our injuries as a group”
“One of the toughest challenges I encounter as a coach is getting the players to gel in a space of two to three weeks before our first game of the season.” “This year we combined players of our 3rd and 4th teams last year.
He goes on to discuss the transition to university football: “Sometimes fresher’s can struggle with the jump to professional men’s football but we have to overcome this”. “we’re set to lose 2/3 players this year who are finishing University but we have to overcome this as well.”
With it all to play for in their final game of the season Rob Bailey’s side will not be looking for a repeat of last year where they missed out on promotion by all but one point.
“I would have rather missed out on promotion by a lot of points than just be one point off”.
“The lads are frustrated to have not secured promotion in our home game last week but I have full confidence in my group of players”. “They are the best squad I’ve had.”
Furthermore, he heaped some well deserved praise on his side. Perhaps reiterating why he believes they can go all the way.
“The players have been fantastic all season long; from the first training session I knew I believed in this squad.’
“We have had bounce back ability. Yes, we have drawn games perhaps when we shouldn’t have but we’ve came back every time.”