‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’ is a motto which must rate highly on Karl Robinson’s trail of thoughts in recent months.
The ambitious manager was bold in his target for the 2012/13 season – he wanted automatic promotion, but as the campaign has progressed inconsistent performances and results have played their part in restricting the Dons to faint hopes of the play-offs.
The Dons now stand nine points adrift from the play-offs with eight games remaining and Robinson’s side must now find their best form of the season to guarantee a late run to the top six. One thing the Liverpudlian refused to do along the way though, was abandon his football philosophy.
Speaking to the media ahead of tomorrow’s game against Colchester United, he said:“I’m not an impact manager, certain managers are impact mangers – they can go in and fight fires, that is not my skill set. My skill set, I believe, stems from my background as a coach and working in youth football, it’s about developing players. For my philosophy to come through it needs longevity,
patience, guidance and help.
“We have built that over the last three years, this year has been a freak year and maybe if I look back I have made some big mistakes at certain stages, at times this season we have gone away from our philosophy and gone a little bit long which has made us look average as a result. I take responsibility over that. I’m not going to change that philosophy – my Plan B is to make Plan A work
Robinson was faced with some stern questions from the media ahead of Saturday’s game against Colchester, especially when quizzed about whether it’s been a season of bad luck or whether there are things to learn from along the way, and Robinson was honest in his assessment.
He added: “I have made mistakes – I’ve picked teams that haven’t worked, I’ve signed players that might not have worked to the extent that we thought it would have, but there is not a manager up and down this country that wouldn’t have made mistakes this year.
“When you look at where we are as a Football Club as well, we have been a victim of our own success. This year we set our stall out to go up, and up to now we are failing on that which is disappointing for us all but there are reasons for that. We’ve had injuries to key players and if you take the best players out of any side up and down the country you’re going to have different type of results and that has been the case for us.”
Understandably, the depth of the squad was also a hot topic of conversation and the subject quickly moved on to money, and the perceived lack of it spent on the squad in comparison to the League’s big spending sides.
“I respect where the Football Club is and the way the Football Club do their business. We had a better budget that last year, we were probably seventh or eighth in the table at the start of the season but we’ll probably end up about 11th.
“A lot of people are trying to predict instant success, we have not got a benefactor or a Russian tycoon, what we have got is a workman-like Chairman who is building the Club in a very unique way. I can be frustrated by that at some times, but I am also appreciative of what the Chairman is trying to layout.”