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Club News

MANAGER: Something different

Paul Simpson on a switch in formation

17 August 2023

Club News

MANAGER: Something different

Paul Simpson on a switch in formation

17 August 2023

We asked if the starting formation was a four-diamond-two at the post-match press conference on Tuesday night and manager Paul Simpson, as he always does, proceeded to explain the thinking behind the tweak.

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“We had to change it a little bit because they were causing us problems, and we ended up going a bit more 4-3-3,” he explained.

“It’s something the players have been able to do in-game, but I think I’ve only maybe started one game with a back four. I just thought I had to do something different.

“Myself and Gav spoke on the coach on the way back from Oxford and I was saying I didn’t want to do it. I watched the Oxford game back on Sunday morning, then I watched two Wigan games, and I thought I had to do something different.

“It worked, we had the defenders battling hard, the midfielders running their socks off and the forwards moving and creating space.

“Football is hard work, you have to run, work, challenge and compete. When you do those things you’ll get opportunities, which is what happened for us.

“The goal comes from Jordan Gibson tracking and chasing their midfield player before he combined with Sean Maguire. I could see the players were shattered at the end of the game, but that’s what we expect.

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“Now we expect them to recover properly and come back again for Saturday because we’ve then got a full week after the Exeter game. It’s full steam ahead for the next home game, I hope we get the support to come and back us again, then it’s up to the players to go and perform from the first whistle.

“I get that there will be frustrations for those not involved. Jack Robinson has come into the club and had a really strong pre-season, but unfortunately for him Jack Armer is ahead of him at this moment.

“It may be that Robbo gets an opportunity soon. My hope is that people like Jayden, Corey and Robbo stay with it and stay with the group. When you have to put that level of work for every game we’re going to need everybody.

“We did 117km in the first game of the season as a group and 118km on Saturday, we didn’t do anything like that last season, so that shows the work they’re putting in. We’ve got to make sure everybody sticks together.”


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