Oxford boss: ‘Disrespectful’ Portsmouth tweet motivated my players

Karl Robinson told how a ‘disrespectful’ Pompey tweet fired up his players to delivery victory.

Sunday, 20th January 2019, 10:46 am
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 6:01 pm
Oxford United manager Karl Robinson and his players. Picture: PA

The Oxford United manager explained a social media post from the Blues was used as motivation as his team picked up a 2-1 win at the Kassam Stadium.

The tweet referenced an incident in the game between the two sides at Fratton Park last season when Nathan Thompson confronted Alex Mowatt after his penalty miss, leading to a reaction from the U’s man which saw him dismissed.

And Robinson explained that gave his players the ammunition to get themselves pumped up for the game.

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Oxford United manager Karl Robinson and his players. Picture: PA

He told www.oxfordmail.co.uk: ‘Their press put a tweet out on their official site of the incident last year.

‘Our players were texting me and weren’t happy with that. It’s nothing to do with the footballing staff, but it was a bit disrespectful.

‘I think you saw wounded animals out there, not just from the recent results and the criticism we’ve got, but we were also motivated.

‘It was all about them getting excited about the game.

‘It was a difficult moment for us, but you’ve got to find a way of winning and we used it as a motivation.’

Goalscorer James Henry echoed Robinson’s sentiment and indicated last season’s game was on the players’ minds

He said: ‘I think if a game like this can’t motivate you then you shouldn’t be playing football.

‘(But) obviously that game was a crazy one and we had a point to prove.

‘It probably wasn’t our prettiest performance by any means, but from now until the end of the season we’ve got to perform like that every week.

‘We’ve got to put our heads in where we don’t want to put them, make those last-ditch tackles and bury teams.

‘In the first half we got two goals and we knew they would come out and fight.

‘I thought everyone did well.’