MATCH PREVIEW: McCann confident he can get the attacking balance right
Peterborough United manager Grant McCann is adamant he can mould his side's attacking talent into an effective free-scoring unit.
On paper, McCann is blessed with an abundance of attacking ability. Free spirits Tom Nichols, Paul Taylor, Marcus Maddison, Nathan Oduwa, Deon Moore, George Moncur and Gwion Edwards are all pushing for a start in tomorrow’s (September 24) League One fixture at the ABAX Stadium (3pm kick off).
Nichols could pay for a run of six games without a game tomorrow with Taylor pushed into a more advanced position to allow midfielder Edwards a return to the starting line-up. McCann is also considering a first start for 17-year-old Moore against ‘The Saddlers.’
The Posh boss was critical of his side’s decision-making and lack of ruthlessness in last weekend’s 1-0 defeat at Sheffield United.
“It’s all about getting the right balance,” McCann stated. “But I have no doubts I can get enough attacking players into the same side to give us the opportunity to score plenty of goals.
“All my attacking players bring something to the table and it’s up to me to come up tith the system and formation to get the best out of them. It’s important I get the right structure defensively behind them as well.
“I’m trying to get Paul Taylor to play further forward. He’s always hungry to get on the ball, but I want him hungry to score goals as well.
“I’ve been showing him videos of his first spell at the club. That’s the Paul Taylor I want to see. He is strong and he is quick and he knows we have players like Marcus Maddison and Chris Forrester who will find him with a pass.
“Nathan Oduwa’s done well in training and in the under 23 games and I will be using him in the next few games. He wants to play, and he’s come here to play, and he will be difficult to keep out of the side.
“Deon Moore is also ready to start. He’s been in and around the first-team squad for a while now. He’s been training with us since before the end of last season. He’s in the matchday squad because he’s ready to start matches, but we have to be careful with him because of his age.
“He’s the same age as Leo da Silva Lopes, but probably a year behind him in experience. Deon is strong for his age though and quick enough to get behind defenders.”
Posh have five games in 15 days starting tomorrow so there might well be some squad rotation. Posh travel to Shrewsbury on Tuesday (September 27) and Southend on October 1 before hosting MK Dons in the Checkatrade Trophy on Tuesday, October 4. McCann’s men then entertain Bury in a League One game to be televised live by Sky Sports on October 8.
Left-back Andrew Hughes is expected to replace Jerome Binnom-Williams tomorrow after serving a one-match suspension.
Walsall failed to have a three-match ban on defender Joe Edwards lifted so he will miss out tomorrow. Former Posh midfielder Erhun Oztumer is expected to start for Walsall.