Coventry City face a difficult season in the Championship – a campaign in which they will have to draw on every ounce of quality within their ranks to ensure they compete and gain a foothold in the division.
That’s a given on the pitch, of course, but it’s the “ridiculous” attention to detail at the training ground where the Sky Blues might just have the edge this season, according to striker Matty Godden.
Asked how the coaching compares to his previous clubs, the 29-year-old striker said: “We know with the detail that the gaffer and Adi Viveash go into that we are as prepared as we can be.
“Adi goes into ridiculous amounts of detail on the training pitch and it really helps us lads.
“We are constantly watching videos of the opposition and how we can hurt them, and just reminding ourselves really of what we’re good at because that’s the main thing, that we know what we’re good at because when we’re at our best we know that even teams at this level that are going to really struggle to deal with us.
“But the coaching is… I can’t speak highly enough about the coaches. It’s the best club I have been at, coaching-wise, by far.
“So yes, it’s absolutely second to none.”
Players often comment on Mark Robins ’s impressive man management while his right-hand man, Viveash, brings a wealth of coaching experience from ten years at Chelsea where he enjoyed huge success with the Academy and development squads.
He comes with a reputation as a brilliant coach, but what type of character is he?
“Very, very demanding,” said Godden.
“He demands a lot from the boys. You won’t find anyone coming in and just going through the motions.
“Adi just won’t let that happen. He would rather send you in than be out on the training pitch like that.
“But to be fair to the lads, everyone has bought into the way Adi works because we all know that he will get the best out of you and also make you a far better player than when you came to the football club, and that’s exactly how I feel.”
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So a hard task master but one for whom everyone has utmost respect?
“Yes, exactly that,” said the in-form striker, who has three goals in his first four games league games this season.
“You can tell by the sessions he puts on, which are absolutely brilliant.”
Allied to the coaching is another huge weapon in City’s armoury this season – team spirit.
So what’s the secret of a good dressing room?
“I think the gaffer, Adi and the recruitment team, that’s a massive part of it,” said Godden.
“They obviously look into the players they bring in.
“You usually get some bad eggs in dressing rooms in teams but we haven’t got a single bad egg in there, whether the boys are in the team, out of the team, in the squad or not in the squad, everyone is together and wants the best for everyone, and I think that comes from above with the gaffer and coaches.
“It’s a very special dressing room that we are a part of and we all realised that last year when we were crowned champions. And it’s started again this year with the 3-2 victory over QPR.”
Asked who are the leaders and loudest characters in the dressing room, he said: “I wouldn’t say we have any really loud players.
“Everyone gets on with everyone and all love each other’s company. We obviously spend more time with each other than we do with our families.”
He added: “The likes of Fadz is a big character in the dressing room; Fanky is loud and bubbly as well and gets everyone going, and that’s what you need.
“We have a lot in there that are just good lads to be around and we all look forward to coming in to training every day.”
As to whether it’s hard for the overseas lads coming into a fairly established dressing room, Godden said: “It can be difficult for the lads coming over here but it’s up to us to help them feel welcome and help them settle in.
“That’s important for us to do that so they feel welcome and play better football.”
Gustavo Hamer has already made his presence felt on the pitch, but what’s he like off it?
“He’s coming out of his shell the more weeks we have been in,” said Godden.
“He’s a top lad is Gus. He’s a funny lad.
“He’s bright and bubbly and, again, he doesn’t really have to say anything because he’s always smiling and laughing and joking, and that rubs off on everyone, especially if you’ve had a bad morning.
“He’s settled in well and everyone can see the quality he is going to bring to the team this year.”