McKenna's methods have made players 'fitter and sharper'

Kane Vincent-Young on as a sub at Bolton Wanderers.

Kane Vincent-Young on as a sub at Bolton Wanderers. - Credit: Pagepix Ltd

Ipswich Town full-back Kane Vincent-Young says new boss Kieran McKenna has made the squad fitter and more cohesive.

Since the former Manchester United first team coach replaced Paul Cook in the hot-seat on December 16, Town have won four of out six games to keep alive hopes of making up ground on the League One play-off places.

Vincent-Young, 25, worked with McKenna, 35, when the pair were an academy prospect and youth coach respectively at Tottenham between 2009 and 2014. 

"When I worked under him back then he was always a really good coach," said Vincent-Young, who returns from a one-game suspension ahead of Saturday's visit of Gillingham.

"What has surprised me is that he has come in here as a manager and the standard of coaching is even better.

"He’s been really good with the lads from a personal point of view. Everybody is onside, everybody is loving training. He’s really approachable, nice and open, so it’s a really nice environment to be in.

"The more time you spend as a coach, the more solid you become in your own ideas.

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“He’s communicated that, along with his staff, really, really well. We're clear on the ideas, clear on the principles. He'll come round and speak to you individually about your role. In training the coaching is very deliberate in terms of knowing where to be and when to be there. We’re a cohesive unit and we’re all really enjoying working under him."

Vincent-Young, who has had a torrid couple of years with injuries, added: “I would say I’m fitter than I have been in a long time.

"We’ve changed our build-up, so instead of working a couple of days consecutively we’re now working three days in a row.

“It is physically more demanding and it gives your body a chance to adapt, so when it comes round to a Saturday you feel fitter and sharper. It has taken everybody a bit of time but we’re getting up to speed and it’s showing on the pitch.

“It all starts with the training, to be honest. It’s really intense, there’s loads of variety and there’s lots of demands. Fair play to us as a group, we’ve responded really well to it and we’re seeing the results.

“We need to continue to buy in to what we’re doing on the training pitch and then try to translate it into good results on match day."