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Keepers giving Carl a headache
MANAGERS are forever looking to improve their squads to ensure players are kept on their toes and never certain of a guaranteed place in the team.
That has been the case at Worcester City this season with each of the 18 players on the books contributing to the club’s fine start.
Following a settled opening, with the same 11 being selected for four successive matches, Carl Heeley has made at least one change in each game since.
Often it has been forced on him through injury or suspension but he has seldom had a bad word to say about the performance of any of his charges.
Most recently, a thigh strain suffered by keeper Glyn Thompson handed Matt Sargeant his chance between the posts, an opportunity he grabbed with both hands.
The former Tipton Town player has kept two clean sheets in three matches and his save to keep City in the FA Cup at Weston-super-Mare last Saturday would not have looked out of place at a higher level.
Now, with Thompson nearing fitness, Heeley is faced with the selection poser of keeping Sargeant in on merit or returning to his vastly experienced and revered summer signing.
That decision could come as early as today when Worcester take on Stalybridge Celtic at St George’s Lane in Blue Square Bet North (3pm).
Thompson, who returned to training on Thursday, has been impressed with Sargeant’s efforts and reckons that is a trait running throughout the camp.
He said: “I think he’s done really well, everything that’s been asked of him.
“But it’s not just about keepers, you need people in the squad who can play when they’re needed because it’s a long season.
“Matt might be young but he’s played some games. He’s done well on his own and doesn’t need any help from me although I will be there to give it to him if needed.”
Former Newport County keeper Thompson was a key figure in the team before his thigh injury and is happy with the progress being made.
He added: “I think we have done well. We have had only one defeat in 13 games, kept six clean sheets and are in the fourth qualifying round of the FA Cup.
“You can’t ask for a lot more than that apart from turning a couple of the draws into wins.”
Today is non-league day and City are admitting season ticket holders of any sporting club into the ground for £5.