Skipper Conor Coady described seeing Jonny make his long-waited return from injury on Sunday as “incredible”.
The Spaniard missed six months of action after suffering a serious knee injury against Olympiacos back in August and had to be patient with his recovery since. However, the 26-year-old was back from the start against Leicester City and slotted in like he’d never been away, putting in an assured 45 minutes, before making a pre-planned exit at the break. Coady, who joined Jonny as part of that rock-solid defence, was delighted to see his “massive friend” return.
On having Jonny back
“When we got the team on Saturday, it was fantastic to see. It was brilliant. He’s a fantastic footballer and a massive part of our team. A massive friend to us all and when he got injured it was really tough to take because he’s a massive part of the team.
“So, to have him back is fantastic and hopefully he can build now he’s got 45 minutes and we’re all here for him, we’re all here to help him and I think he’s done fantastic. To be out for so long and then come back the way he did, and as quickly as he has, is a brilliant testament to him.”
On a good point and clean sheet
“I thought we did enough to win the game, if I’m being honest. We were compact, we were organised, we knew it was going to be tough against a team like Leicester who are doing really well this season, but we’ve known it from previous seasons.
“I think they’ve always been quite close the games. We knew it was going be like that, but I thought the lads dug in, did really well and created a number of chances where I thought we could’ve nicked it as well.
“It’s a point, it’s a clean sheet which is big for us, that’s what we want to do, we want to keep on keeping clean sheets now. That’s two in the last couple of weeks so hopefully we can keep on going now.”
A shame we couldn’t get the three points at home... but I’M BACK to give my everything for the pack again!! Doctors, staff, teammates, family, friends, supporters… THANK YOU!! 💛 No words can describe how I feel!! The work continues now!! 🐺💯 pic.twitter.com/CdeVec2Alh— Jonny Otto (@JonnyOtto19) February 7, 2021
On an impressive first-half
“Speaking to each other before the game, making sure the importance of starting a game well. We’ve not done it enough in recent weeks and we need to make sure from the first minute our attitude and our application is right in the game because we know how we want to play, we’ve got a way of playing, we know how we want to do it.
“We listen to the manager every week, leading into games, and it’s just about speaking before the game and making sure we’re switched on because the last few weeks haven’t been good enough in terms of the first few minutes, whatever it is, 20 minutes, half an hour and we made sure tonight that we spoke before the game to make sure we put that right.”
On turning chances into goals
“It’s tough to say, we’re creating chances, and real good chances as well. The lads are doing ever so well in creating up there – Adama [Traore], Pedro [Neto], obviously ‘big Willy’ [Jose] and Fabio’s [Silva] coming on, 'Morgs' [Gibbs-White].
“We’re creating them and that’s the biggest thing. I think the hardest thing in football is to put it in the net, but it’s tough. We’re a team, we work together, we win together, lose together, draw together so to put your finger on it is hard at the minute, but what we will do is keep working hard and that’s one thing we will keep on doing.”
On two meetings with Southampton coming up
“Recovering, making sure we’re right. It’s a big game, we want to do well in the FA Cup. We say that every year. We had a good run a couple years ago and it would be nice if we can do something like that again, but we’re focused on the next one.
“It’s a real, good tough tie against Southampton. It’s something we’re looking forward to, so the next couple of days we’ll recover, we’ll make sure we’re right, and we’ll listen to the managers and try to put things right from tonight as well.”