I have been harking on about this for a while to any fellow foxes who will listen, and of course, those who won’t.
One of the key reasons that we have underperformed so far this season is due to a lack of general fitness.
Now it is imperative that this is sorted in training, but one of the other priorities is match fitness. How can a reserve player expect to step into the shoes of any injured or suspended player, when they themselves have only played a friendly or two, and some training 5-a-sides?
The reason we are not involved in a reserve league was a decision to save money. Now it’s too late and we have plenty of money we find ourselves in a catch-22.
To improve the squad, in depth, and quality, you must bring in players for both back-up purposes, squad competition, and of course 1st team choice. It’s imperative that a title challenging team should have a decent 2nd string side to fill in the holes as they appear in a long, physical, and draining season in the Championship. Look to Newcastle and West Brom last year, and certainly the Baggies in our Carling Cup match.
With a bench that can win games – those coming onto the pitch should be match ready – match fit.
Players like Lamey, Fryatt, Waghorn, Morrison, Crncic, Logan, Ikeme, N’Guessan, Tunchev(especially!), Moreno, and maybe even Ashley Chambers would all benefit from this and certainly challenge 1st teamers. All this is to create healthy competition and a reason to make Sven think twice about selections.
I think Pearson and Sousa may have selected those who impressed in training, but when it came to the match day looked as though they never seen a ball before or the players they were standing with.
How can that be success be achieved without participation in a reserve league? We have had 4 reserve friendlies so far this season. Is that really good enough?
Do we stand a chance now with an ever-increasing squad, and obvious limitations, of reaching a play-off position due to these circumstances? Will our current team become fragmented and disinterested come January? Training is great but it’s no substitute for competitive match play. I’m sure Sven’s hands are tied. What are his plans?
Immediate enrolment next season is a must. How can we bring Academy players through, if they are not impressing and making it into the reserves to play along with rotational team members gaining vital experience and learning new skills?
It’ll be another year before any further investment in youth players can occur, as without a crucial reserve team, our entire squad is stagnating, and not improving. Bringing in new players might actually make this even worse.
Expectation is high from our owners (King Power Group), and still some fans. I believe we should expect no higher than mid-table this season, and hope to get higher than this.
Hope and expectation are to vastly creatures.
Your thoughts please? Don’t be shy…