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Pre Season

Coach Reddington hails Sakho influence and “powerful” Pierrick

31 July 2019

First team coach Dave Reddington was pleased with his youthful side’s efforts in the draw at AFC Wimbledon last night, but left ruing what might have been – had they held on for an extra couple of minutes.

Reddington was standing in for Roy Hodgson and Ray Lewington, who were in the stands, said: “We’re a little bit disappointed not to get the result, but there were a lot of positives to come out really - lads getting minutes in their legs, but also young lads getting tested against a League One side. In terms of the team, we asked them to dig in and stick together – and get through the performance. We’ll probably take the 2-2.”

Reddington praised the team’s shape, as the side adopted a relatively unfamiliar 4-3-3. He described the preparation as “frantic”, elaborating: “Trying to put the team together, and then trying to get them as organised as we can. The group haven’t trained together – so basically a lot of it is done by video and tactics boards.  The lads took it all on and did their best to deliver the plan.”

Match Reports

Report: Pierrick at the double for Palace in AFC Wimbledon draw

31 July 2019

Indeed, it was a significant improvement from the side’s loss at Barnet a fortnight ago. “Barnet came a bit early after Switzerland [tour]. Every single team had been on tour, so everyone hadn’t been together.  It was a difficult game. Barnet played really as well which shocked us a bit.  They had lots of energy in the second half which we didn’t match. We said today – ‘lads, you’ve got to be disappointed with that result’ – they’ve got to bank that and move forwards.”

The former Academy coach was quick to praise 17 year-old forward Brandon Pierrick, who netted twice. “Obviously Brandon’s two goals were a real positive – he’s a talent we’ve kept an eye on for a long time in the Academy. He’s a very powerful boy – electric pace off the mark.”

Pre Season

Watch free highlights of AFC Wimbledon v Palace

31 July 2019

It was a pleasing night for the coaching staff, as centre-back Mamadou Sakho completed 60 minutes as a starter following a five-month absence. His impact went far beyond his calming influence on the pitch, as Reddington said: “He’s really important. He’s been back in training about a week now – it’s been good to have him back. His presence around the place is really important, his body language has improved – he looks really positive in terms of what he’s doing.

“Even today talking to the lads before the game – he got them all together and told them how important the game was and all of a sudden, all the players eyes light up, and they realise – we’re here for a game. His presence around the place is important.”

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