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MANAGER: Felt as though I wanted a back four

Paul Simpson on the Tuesday night formation

4 October 2023

Club News

MANAGER: Felt as though I wanted a back four

Paul Simpson on the Tuesday night formation

4 October 2023

The change to the formation employed by manager Paul Simpson on Tuesday night saw a switch to a back four, and he explained after the game his thinking behind the move.

Club News

MANAGER: I think the players were outstanding

4 October 2023

“I think it worked well,” he said. “Obviously Tomas came in. He’s trained well and been really good with his communication since he got left out of the side, and I thought he did really well in the game.

“He made a couple of saves first half and came and took crosses and punched things. Leaving him out, I felt it was the right thing to do. I felt he just needed a little bit of a prod.

“The challenge for him is to stay at this level. He’s been louder, communicating more, which is a big part of a goalkeeper. I’m really pleased for him.

“Disappointed with Jokull that he did what he did, and he’s out of the side, he was suspended for the one game, but it’s up to Tomas to keep hold of that shirt now.”

“Overall, because of the legs they’ve got, I went with a different shape, it was a tactical one, and that meant that Hunts missed out,” he commented. “I spoke to him, he understood that, and I thought the two centre backs were outstanding against a difficult side.

“You have to build into games and earn the right to be involved in games. They’ve got the pace of Jade-Jones, Mason-Clark as the 10, and Ajiboye on the other side, so they had some real pace about them and they’re a good side.

“We dug in and did the job, we recovered well and every recovery run was a sprint, which is what I ask all the time.

“I think if we’d gone with a back three they would have really exploited us in wide areas and we’d have ended up getting pinned back as a back five. I didn’t want to do that.

Match Reports


3 October 2023

“I felt as though I wanted a back four, and Callum Guy sitting, so Callum could look after their 10. Full-backs look after wide players, and it was two v one against Clarke-Harris.

“I was saying to the players in front of them, and Callum backing it up, go and win the game for us, be the front players, give us that threat. Once we weathered the first bit, I thought we did. #

“Joe Garner gave us a real good focal point which we’ve not really had. Losing JJ is a big thing, but Joe stuck to the task really well. The two wide players, Sean MAguire made some brilliant runs in behind but just didn’t get the ball bouncing for him.

“All in all we put in a really good shift. Alfie McCalmont was excellent, showed some really good quality on the ball in the first half, found some passes, some nice pockets.

“I was worried because I know what happens if you leave your captain out and you lose the game, you get criticised. But I have to make tough decisions sometimes and I felt it was the right decision to make.

“Hunts understood it, I spoke to him, and they’ve all got a part to play. Every player has to make sure they’re right because their opportunity will come at some point.”

Club News

GALLERY: Peterborough

4 October 2023

On the dramatic earning of the point, he told us: “It was an outstanding, working performance where we’ve had to do all sides of the game.

“We had to weather it first half, because they started like a house on fire. From what I’ve seen, I’ve watched three of their games, they’re the best side we’ve come across. They are one hell of a team.

“It’s taken years to build that team, it’s not happened overnight, they’ve had promotion to the Championship, a relegation, a promotion, they’ve yo-yoed. They are a strong football team for this level and I’ll be very surprised if they’re not up there come the end of the season.

“What we did was that we stayed in the game, rode our luck a bit early on, but we defended for our lives. The players worked their socks off, and in the last 15 minutes of the first half we had control, got into good areas.

“We had ten times we got into the final third with some real good football, and didn’t get the right quality, we didn’t work the goalkeeper. Second half we held our own.

“I think we’ve defended set plays really well, it’s an incredible delivery they put into the box, Fin Back has had their defender climbing all over the top of him and he heads it in. It’s a good delivery, a good first contact, which is a real shame.

“I’m just delighted with the character the players have shown, the way they stuck at it, worked, kept going, been brave enough to keep getting in the final third.

“Jordan Gibson showed bravery to get that shot going off, and yes, it got a deflection but who cares – it’s about being brave enough to get things on target and to take what comes. I really do think, maybe Peterborough might disagree, we absolutely deserved a minimum of a point out of the way we went about it.”

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