John Obi Mikel has charged his teammates at Middlesbrough to be bold and confident and not be discouraged whenever they make mistakes which`he reckoned is normal in the game of football.
The Nigerian who was speaking to the club’s website on Monday said he had realised that his colleagues usually get tensed anytime fans criticise them for giving the ball away.
Following his observations, Mikel has appealed to his colleagues to remain fearless in the face of criticisms.
“They need someone to say to them, ‘keep going, keep playing, if you make a mistake don’t put your head down’.
The Nigerian who had the honour of captaining the team to their 1-0 victory against Hull City last Saturday said fans were entitled to their opinions because they want their teams to always win.
“Fans want to see….it’s not normal that you play football games without making a mistake. It’s normal to make mistakes. We have to accept it, they don’t want to see us give the ball away.
“But we can’t play a game without giving the ball away as a team. It happens. That’s why we know we can’t get upset with the fans. They have their opinion. We want to play well and want to score goals.
“If you look at the way we play, we try to play the ball. That’s important. It’s the right way to play, but doing that you will make mistakes. We have to keep doing what we’re doing, creating chances and if we take those we will win games.”
Boro ended a run of four straight defeats at the Riverside with a much needed victory over play-off chasing rivals Hull City on Saturday and will look to build on that when Stoke City head for Teesside this Friday.