ironilunga wrote:If he is fit and raring to go I think he deserves to start. What message would dropping him serve after his recent performances and goals?
Oh, he deserves to start. He's certainly done enough to earn his place in the side.
But it's a squad game. I know Sam has been particularly good at setting the tone that if you play well enough, you keep the shirt. But the flipside of that is keeping the players fresh by rotating when needed.
As for the message it sends, it depends how it's presented
If I were Sam, I wouldn't present it to him like this:-
Sloop John B wrote:That despite the goals his overall game isn't quite there yet. Drifts in and out of games from what I've seen... not knocking the kid he looks like he could be a real gem but still got a ways to go yet.
Sure, I don't disagree in the slightest. He does still have a way to go
But surely it would be better to say to the player something along the lines of "you've earnt your place in the first 11, but you've played 2 games already this week. Whereas I rested a lot of the others for the league cup game, you played, gave a lot to the team, so I feel you're deserving a rest for this one. We've got a lot of tough games coming up, which I'll need you for, so you'll be on the bench for this one, and will probably get on towards the end"
I guess I'm thinking it could be a good game to change things for two reasons. Partly due to that photo of him asleep on the bus, which implied that going from reserve/pre-season level to 90 minutes for the first team took a bit out of him. As he has played, what, the last 3 games on the trot(?), I can't help feeling it's better to rest him sooner rather than later, when he has to be rested
But also, for a tough(ish) away game, I can't help feeling we'd benefit from Diame's bite in the middle, at least while we weather the early storm