Peterborough United set to give another shot to Sammie Szmodics

Peterborough United manager Darren Ferguson looks likely to stick with Sammie Szmodics rather than Jonson Clarke-Harris as Siriki Dembele’s strike partner for the visit of a talented Coventry City side to the Weston Homes Stadium on Saturday (January 15, 3pm).

By Alan Swann
Thursday, 13th January 2022, 5:00 pm
Sammie Szmodics of Peterborough United shoots at goal against Bristol Rovers. Photo: Joe Dent/

Szmodics scored just his third goal of the season and impressed with his attitude and workrate during last Saturday’s 2-1 third round FA Cup win over Bristol Rovers .

But he missed so many other chances to score Posh chairman Darragh MacAnthony jokingly said he would have ‘assassinated’ him if Posh had failed to win the game!

Szmodics himself admitted he could have scored six goals against Rovers, but his superior movement and speed is expected to get him the nod over the more powerful Clarke-Harris as long as Posh stick with their midfield diamond formation. New striker signing Callum Morton has been ruled out as he receiovers from a hamstring injury.

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Coventry striker Matt Godden celebrates a goal for Posh against Sunderland in April, 2019.

“We certainly have to be more clinical in front of goal whoever plays,” Ferguson said. “We are up against a top side in Coventry. They’ve had a blip as they haven’t won in six league matches but everyone goes through a run like that in the Championship. They are still very much in touch with the play-offs.

“They have a settled system and they have players with great energy, but we competed well with them for an hour earlier this season before they blew us away and at home we have to fancy our chances of being even better.

“We have been good at home all season. We could have won every game we have played and there’s no reason to thing we won’t be good again on Saturday.

“Until we sort ourselves out away from home we have to be good on our own pitch.

“It’s good to be back in action in the league at last. It’s also good we haven’t lost a lot of ground to the teams around us. There’s everything to play for, but we have to better in the second-half of the season.”

Loan full-back Bali Mumba should start Saturday’s game after impressing as a goalscoring half-time substitute against Rovers. He’s more likely to play on the left ahead of Joe Tomlinson rather than on the right instead of Nathan Thompson.

New goalkeeper Steven Benda could also make his full Posh debut. There was criticism of regular number one Dai Cornell from Ferguson and MacAnthony after the win over Rovers.

Posh hope attacking player Kwame Poke will be back in the matchday squad after missing last weekend following a positive Covid test. Fellow summer signing Joel Randall chas been ruled out.

Coventry have had injury concerns over key defenders Kyle McFadzean and Ian Maatsen, but neither has been ruled out of the game. Former Posh striker Matt Godden is expected to lead the Coventry forward line.