I THINK the work Steve Evans is putting his players through during this international break is a good idea.
I think it keeps the players focused, it keeps them fit and sharp and motivated and I believe the game at Wycombe on Friday was a good idea.
It’s a long time two weeks to go without a competitive match before Saturday’s clash with Rotherham and it’s good to keep you in that routine.
Steve put the game on and it was a good exercise. It’s a worthwhile way of him seeing certain players that have come back from injury that have not played regularly in the team and it gives him an idea of what he has in the squad.
On two fronts, it’s been a worthwhile exercise for the players and I think it’s been good for the manager to see what else he has got within the ranks against a good strong Wycombe side.
Steve he will have probably found out quite a lot about what he has in his squad.
With goalscorer Lee Erwin I’m not sure that he’s going to start games and I think he has still got to bide his time.
The first two choices will be Mirco Antenucci and Chris Wood, that’s for sure and obviously they both scored in the last run out against Huddersfield.
But we don’t have many striking options and the Wycombe game has given Steve a good look at Erwin to see if he can add the quality that is required as back-up for those two players.
I hear the young keeper Bailey Peacock-Farrell came on – I’d not heard of him before – but I know the manager has mentioned about a keeper before. That was one area he was looking for and he’s trying things out, he’s having a look at what he’s got within the youth and within his squad and he needs to do that; you’ve got to do that first before you go out and spend any money.
Because of Marco Silvestri’s recent displays, I know he has now said he’s not looking to bring in another keeper and you look for consistency for players and especially key players in important positions.
You look at your ‘keeper, you look at your strikers and they can win or lose you games in that position.
Silvestri, yes, he has had a good couple of games and I back him to the hilt with his performances as I think he has been fantastic.
But I still think do we have enough in that area in strength? I’m not sure. I still think in those key areas you need competition and you need strength.
You talk about consistency and with Silvestri we’ve seen the good and the bad, but with Ross Turnbull still out injured, we still need someone strong enough to be able to come in and give him that competition that he needs to keep him sharp.
I know Steve has enquired with Norwich City about Kyle Lafferty and he has been impressive for Northern Ireland over the Euro 2016 qualifying campaign.
He has not been playing regularly for Norwich but he’s starting for his country and scoring goals. He’s one of these players that has scored goals everywhere he has been whether it’s been Rangers or whatever and he can be a handful on his day.
It’s a case of whatever we can get, in the right budget, that’s going to give the quality and get the goals that we need to push us up the league. We are looking at international player which is a good thing.
I heard the David Moyes speculation during the week but Steve has come in when a lot of people doubted him and I think he’s done an absolutely fantastic job.
We’ve seen improvements in players and within the team and that’s what you are looking for when a new manager comes in. Can he get the players motivated? Can he get them organised? Can he get out of them what he wants?
At the moment he’s doing all those three things. The players seem to be enjoying their football again, there’s a healthy environment within the camp and players and I think right now David Moyes wouldn’t get the manager’s job with the way Steve’s performing.
I think he has been absolutely excellent and I think we need to give him the credit he deserves. He’s come in here and done a fantastic job under difficult circumstances and got on with it professionally. He deserves a lot more credit.