PREVIEW: McCann pleased to have a headache

The Posh management team of Mark Tyler (left), Grant McCann (centre) and David Oldfield (right) have plenty to ponder before the Walsall match. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.
The Posh management team of Mark Tyler (left), Grant McCann (centre) and David Oldfield (right) have plenty to ponder before the Walsall match. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.
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Peterborough United manager Grant McCann admits he has a massive selection headache ahead of Saturday’s League One game at Walsall (September 16).

McCann rang the changes to his starting line-up for the visit of MK Dons on Tuesday (September 12) as a reaction to a first defeat of the season at the hands of Bradford City at the ABAX Stadium last Saturday.

Posh midfielder Chris Forrester leaves the field after a red card at Walsall last season.

Posh midfielder Chris Forrester leaves the field after a red card at Walsall last season.

And he was rewarded by an excellent performance as goals from Ryan Tafazolli - his first of the season - and the outstanding Marcus Maddison sealed a 2-0 which lifted Posh into second.

Posh had dropped from first to third after losing 3-1 to Bradford. Captain Jack Baldwin, one of the players left out against MK Dons, scored the consolation goal.

Anthony Grant was suspended from the midweek match after collecting a red card against Bradford. Leo Da Silva Lopes and Junior Morias were also left on the substitutes’ bench enabling full-back Liam Shephard and striker Ricky Miller to make their first starts for the club. Andrew Hughes and Chris Forrester were also recalled.

Posh also changed formation, another gamble that paid off for the manager.

Posh star Gwion Edwards is strecthered off at Walsall last season.

Posh star Gwion Edwards is strecthered off at Walsall last season.

“I’ve given myself a headache,” McCann stated. “But I’m happy about that. The strength in depth we have was evident against MK when we were excellent from the first minute.

“The players who came in were all very good. Liam Shephard was outstanding considering it was his debut in a big game.

“In hindsight I wish I had made changes for the Bradford game. I wasn’t comfortable going into that match as I knew we had three or four players who were operating at only 80-90% fitness.

“I was also comfortable with changing formation. We have a few systems we could use and I will have to give that plenty of thought before the Walsall game as well.”

Defensive midfielder Grant is available after serving a one-game ban and should return for an away game against a team who were thumped 5-1 at Rotherham on Tuesday.

Posh have not scored on their last four visits to Walsall. Last season Posh went down 2-0 to two late goals and saw then skipper Chris Forrester sent off and star midfielder Gwion Edwards pick up an injury that ended his season.