Nolan: I Lost My Head and Was Stupid
Friday, 20th Nov 2020 10:52
Jon Nolan has blamed his own stupidity for the late red card picked up in the controversial 1-0 defeat at former club Lincoln last month that saw him serve a three-game ban and miss the 1-0 league wins at home to Gillingham and Crewe, as well as the 2-1 defeat at Sunderland.
The 28-year-old midfielder was back in the Blues’ midfield for the extra-time FA Cup first round loss at home to Portsmouth when his fourth goal of the season just before the break prevented the visitors going in two goals ahead at half-time.
One-time Everton youngster Nolan looks set to hold on to his place for tomorrow’s visit to Portman Road of another of his former clubs, Shrewsbury, from whom he arrived in August 2018 after helping them to reach the League One play-off final at Wembley, where they lost 2-1 to Rotherham.
Looking back to his 90th minute dismissal for a late challenge on Harry Anderson, Nolan said: “It was rash and silly really, maybe a rush of blood. Five minutes earlier I was stamped down the back of my heel and the ref gave the foul to them.
“I don’t know, I just sort of lost my head and I was stupid. You need a bit of nastiness throughout the team but there’s a difference between nastiness and stupidity if you know what I mean.
“The ultimate punishment was losing my place in the team for three games and it took me a while to get over it. But I was back in the team for the FA Cup tie against Portsmouth and it’s all behind me now. I’m just looking to move on from it.”
Asked how highly he rated his own individual displays this season, Nolan added: “Apart from the obvious one, when I was sent off at Lincoln, I think my performances this season have been pretty good.
“To be honest, the formation helps because I’m playing in my preferred position. It gives me licence to get forward and score goals. I’ve scored four up till now and I think that’s a good return for the number of games I’ve played.
“I hope there will be a few more goals and I feel I’m well on target to get double figures for the season. I set my own target before the season got under way and I definitely think it’s doable.”
Nolan, who hails from Huyton, just outside Liverpool, has looked at home in Town’s 4-3-3 formation and believes it can pave the way for more of a sustained promotion challenge in the current campaign than they were able to muster last term.
He added: “We obviously came into the season with some new ideas and a new approach from the manager. We’ve clearly got the talent, the midfield players, to implement that style.
“When we came in for pre-season training and had a debriefing session it was pretty obvious that last season simply wasn’t good enough. The manager came in with his new ideas and we’ve obviously been working on it in training. I think it’s worked pretty well to be honest.
“I don’t know where I read it but it was something about us keeping the ball at the back too much. If you’re going to play that style of football you’ve got to have patience but, to be fair, considering the short amount of time we’ve had to work on it, I think it’s been pretty good.
“There are times when you need to get the ball forward a bit earlier and especially now that Kayden [Jackson] is back because he gives us the pace up top to put him in behind. I agree massively that it’s all about finding that balance.
“We don’t just want to pass it around at the back between the centre-halves, we want to get forward to create chances and score goals.
“With James Norwood also coming back it means we’ve got options and loads of quality throughout the squad.
“We’ve had quite a few injuries this season and hopefully everyone will be back fully fit again. It’s a massive, massive boost to have Kayden back again and he’s obviously hoping to recapture the form he showed last season when he and James got 11 goals each.”
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