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Fielding a settled side is key to success
10:30am Wednesday 29th February 2012 in Steve Carley By Steve Carley - Midlands Sports Journalist of the Year 2013, @stevecarleyWN
HERE’S an interesting statistic for you — Worcester City have only named the same team for successive matches on four occasions this season.
Considering they have played 33 times, that’s lower than you might expect for a team with aspirations of challenging for the Blue Square Bet North play-offs.
Even more interesting is the fact that Carl Heeley’s side have not lost when sticking with the same 11 from one game to the next.
The first time was at the start of the campaign when City beat Vauxhall Motors 2-0 and then drew 1-1 against Halifax Town, both at St George’s Lane.
A 3-0 league victory against Solihull Moors in September was also followed by a 2-1 success against Bishop’s Stortford, which was again on home soil.
On the third occasion, in October, City defeated both Blyth Spartans and Harrogate Town, 2-1 away and 3-2 at home respectively.
The last time was the 1-1 draw against Histon last month, with Heeley going for the same 11 that had drawn 0-0 at Workington two days earlier.
All this would suggest City achieve better results with a settled side, which begs the question of why don’t they do it more often?
There are, of course, mitigating circumstances. As well as injuries and suspensions, there has been a large turnover of personnel, with 28 players having pulled on the City shirt to date this campaign.
Yet, although they have been made with the aim of improving the team in the long run, it is difficult to argue that they haven’t caused an element of disruption as well.
City won last Saturday, beating Blyth 2-1 with a good display. It will be interesting to see if the same team starts against Boston United this weekend.
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