FOOTBALL - Sky Blues boss Robins praises 'phenomenal' achievement after play-off finish - The Coventry Observer

FOOTBALL - Sky Blues boss Robins praises 'phenomenal' achievement after play-off finish

Coventry Editorial 9th May, 2023 Updated: 10th May, 2023   0

MARK Robins hopes Coventry City’s play-off finish is ‘only the start’ as the Sky Blues boss heaped praise on his players ahead of their semi-final showdown with Middlesbrough.

The Sky Blues booked their place in the play-offs with a 1-1 draw at the Riverside Stadium on the final day of the Championship season.

And Coventry will now meet Michael Carrick’s side again over two legs in the play-off semi-finals with City just three games away from a dream return to the Premier League.

Robins said: “It’s just a phenomenal achievement, but it’s only the start, we’ve got a bit of work to do now, we’re really looking forward to it.

“It’s an outstanding and brilliant achievement, considering all the rubbish we’ve had to put up with, hopefully we’re three games away from something really special.

“Middlesbrough have got more to come, to keep them as quiet as we did was testament to what the players did, it gives us a real chance and builds the excitement.

“We were always in control of our fate, in the end we got the result we needed, but the first goal was perfect, we had a few more chances to put the game to bed early on.

“They paid us a lot of respect, hopefully we’ve learnt from it, they will have certainly learnt from it, we’ve got to be bang on it over the two legs.

“We’ll enjoy it, I’m proud of every single one of them, the players, the staff, everybody, I can only pick 11 put they’ve been so together and they’ll be ready when called upon.

“The supporters have been magnificent as well, everybody deserves what comes next, let’s see how we go.”

The Sky Blues only needed a point to secure a top-six finish on the final day and took the lead through Gustavo Hamer’s drilled finish into the bottom left corner on 22 minutes.

However, Middlesbrough equalised through Cameron Archer’s strike in first-half injury time to ensure the game ended all square.

City beat Boro 1-0 in the reverse fixture at the CBS Arena back in October as Viktor Gyokeres scored the game’s only goal to hand the Sky Blues their first win of the league season.

That game also proved to be former Boro boss Chris Wilder’s final game in charge of the club before he was eventually replaced by former Manchester United and England midfielder Carrick.

Coventry host Boro in the first leg on Sunday, May 14 with kick-off at midday at the Coventry Building Society Arena.

The second leg takes place on Wednesday, May 17 with kick-off at 8pm at the Riverside.

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