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Oxford United boss - critics won't change my approach
Boos have not been uncommon from supporters at the Kassam Stadium this season, but the discontent reached a new level on Tuesday night.
After cheering their side to wins over pacesetters Gillingham and Port Vale in the previous week, the U’s fans were left stunned by the sight of Rotherham United scoring four goals in 14 minutes before half-time en route to a 4-0 win.
Their anger was directed at Wilder, who had not been on the receiving end of such a vocal protest since taking over the reins in December 2008.
The U’s boss believes football supporters in general are more critical than when he was a player, but insists it does nothing to shake his confidence.
“It’s the first time it’s happened to me at this football club,” he said.
“It’s not a nice experience, but we won’t dwell on it, as we didn’t dwell on the exceptional victories against Gillingham and Port Vale.
“I think people need to have someone to shout and scream at.
“Nothing will change me because I will stand out there all day long and I will fight for my players, fight for what I believe in.
“I stood out there against Gillingham and Port Vale, so nothing will change me.
“I’m not all of a sudden going to cower away in my dugout.
“Tuesday night certainly wasn’t good enough and it hurts, but I’m not an embarrassment as a manager and we’re not an embarrassment as a team.”
Wilder took comfort from the number of people who called after Tuesday night to pass on their thoughts and encouragement.
Among those who were at the game was Alan Knill, an old friend and now the Torquay boss, who will go up against the U’s at Plainmoor tomorrow.
Although Wilder is clearly targeting a win in Devon to improve the mood on the terraces, he would prefer any criticism was aimed at him rather than the players.
He said: “I understand it’s an emotional game, I’m the one who stands out in the technical area and receives everything when things don’t go well.
“Sometimes when a player misses from five yards, the manager gets it, when the left back passes or throws it out of play, the manager gets it.
“I would rather have that and take the pressure off the players.”