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Micky Adams is backing match winner Stern John to win over the Coventry City fans.


The striker, who came under intense fire from the Sky Blue boo-boys last week, bounced back with his seventh goal of the season at Reading to give the club their first three points since the New Year's Day win at Rotherham.

"I can only tell you what I see, and in training Stern is probably the most outstanding individual we have got," said the City boss, who takes the blame for John's limp performance against Burnley.

"For whatever reason he is not the most popular of players with the fans but when you see how he performed for 90 minutes against Reading, topped by a goal, it was fantastic.

"And that's the only way you answer your critics. It is difficult to win the crowd back but it is not impossible, particularly if you are a goal scorer and can go on a run of goals that keep this club in the Championship. I am sure the fans will forgive him that and then we will start again in the pre-season."

Adams added: "He was on international duty before last week's game and arrived back from a mammoth flight and was perhaps jet lagged, but I chose to put him on the pitch. He said he was all right but maybe I have got to take that decision away from him."

The striker who was clearly hurt by the fans' reaction last week, said: "I don't have much to say and just want to let my football do the talking. You could say I answered my critics but I just want to get my head down and work hard.

"Having the fans on your back is just one of those things but as a professional footballer, sometimes you are up and sometimes you are down, and the fans have to understand that. I just want to keep on playing and hope-fully get the goals to turn things round for us.

"We started the game pretty well and I had a chance in the first minute and we stayed in it even though we gave away an easy goal again.

"But we didn't throw in the towel and the lads showed great character and worked hard as a team. And as long as we stick together as a team I think we will get results."

John was happy to be reunited with his former Birmingham City team-mate, Ian Bennett, and enjoyed linking up with his latest strike partner, Trevor Benjamin, in the 2-1 reverse at the Madejski Stadium.

"Ian is an experienced goal-keeper who has played in the Premier League and First Division, and with him at the back it gives a good presence for us," he said. "Benji is a strong lad as well who works hard for us.

"It was only our first game together but I enjoyed it and I am sure we will get better."