23rd Oct, 2017

Jim O’Brien: I’d be honoured to captain the Sky Blues again

Steve Carpenter 16th Jul, 2015 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

SKY Blues midfielder Jim O’Brien admits on a personal level he would be disappointed to lose the captaincy but understands there are now several strong candidates for the armband next season.

The 27-year-old was made skipper for the first time in his career last season after former boss Steven Pressley selected the Scot over Reda Johnson because of his continued injury problems.

Last week manager Tony Mowbray revealed that he has yet to come to a decision over who he wants to captain the side.

New Signing Sam Ricketts is an obvious choice having led Wolves to promotion in 2013/14 and both Reda Johnson and O’Brien himself are other options.

“It would be nice to be made captain again this season,” O’Brien told the Observer. “It was a great honour when I got it.

“Maybe I did well, maybe I didn’t. I don’t know – I’d never been captain before.

“Obviously Sam (Ricketts) and Reda (Johnson) are contenders but it doesn’t change anything.

“In myself I’ll probably be a bit disappointed if I’m not but that’s just a natural feeling.

“Whoever the captain is next season I’m sure the manager will might the right decision on that so I’m not going to get too worried about it.”

Asked if he felt any added pressure after being made Pressley’s leader on the field last season, O’Brien continued: “No not really, the opposite in fact.

“I think I preferred being captain if I’m honest, but I do understand it can come with added pressure and I think that’s just down to the individual.

“I quite enjoyed being captain last season. I suppose you don’t want to be the captain of a team that’s not doing great – it doesn’t look good for yourself.

“But it was a great honour and if I’m given the armband again this season then that would be great.”

It was another season to forget for the Sky Blues as they secured their League One survival on the last day of the season away at Crawley Town.

Mowbray has previously spoken about getting the club back to the Championship as soon as possible.

And although promotion is the aim, O’Brien has revealed that the players are keeping their feet firmly on the ground for now.

He added: “The manager has mentioned promotion a couple of times and he wants to get out of this league as quickly as possible.

“That’s the aim but I don’t think we’ll be shouting too much about it. I think we’ll go quietly about it.

“We’ve got quite a humble group of lads who want to just take each games as it comes and that’s the best way to approach it.

“It’s a tough start but I don’t think there are going to be any easy games next season.

“Even the teams that have come up are going to be experienced. They’ll know how to see games out and they’ll know how to rough you up a little bit and we’ve got to stand up to that.

“We’ll prepare for each game as it comes. You can’t plan too far ahead because if you do that then you’re fighting a losing battle from the start.”

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