To loan or not to loan
I close my eyes for a minute and a mini injury crisis takes hold. The size of our squad means a mini crisis can easily be a maxi one and I nearly dropped a nappy at Parky's "we might get a loan in before Carlisle" comment
today. Do we really need to do that?
I can't remember the terms of Moot2kil's loan deal but with him up there and Fleetwood and Dickson out west, the 'emergency' loan of Mooney and a potential right-back does appear to be ridiculous. Unfortunately Chris Solly's training ground knee injury means he's unable to step into Richardson's boots, who is struggling with a thigh injury picked up in Kent on Saturday. A big shame for Chris because from what I have seen, he'd have been more than able.
So what are our options if we are to avoid an outsider coming in? Youga could play there with Basey coming into the left-back slot. Semedo has played there, although that would take an awful lot away from our midfield and I wouldn't want to see that. Wagstaff played there in pre-season and perhaps even captain Nicky Bailey could slot in behind Sam. I think we have enough cover in the squad to patch over the injuries at right-back without going into the loan market.
The same could not be said in goal with Robbie Elliot being declared out for up to six weeks with a torn adductor muscle, done late in his MoM performance in Kent on Saturday. Elliot's form has been exceptional this season, when you consider his age and experience. I can't think of any errors that have cost us goals and in the bulk of the 14 league games played he has been called upon to make at least one outstanding and game altering save.
Robbie will be missed but I am pleased for Darren Randolph, who has waited for his chance. A year younger than Elliot, a couple of season's back Randolph appeared to be ahead of him in the pecking order making his debut a whole season earlier at Anfield and the Republic of Ireland U21 international has had more loan experience than his counterpart, although a bust-up at Hereford may have blighted his reputation.Parky signed Karl Ikeme
on Wednesday for 28 days from Wolves and the question is will his stay be as an understudy to Randolph or will he grab the tangerine shirt at Brunton Park on Saturday? His first team experience is not indifferent to Elliot or Randolph and for the first part of the last season Ikeme was actually Wolves' first choice goalie until he got injured. Weirdly like both Elliot and Randolph, Ikeme also played on loan at Accrington Stanley - don't they have any of their own goalkeepers?
So a few decisions for Parky who kept an unchanged team for the first 8 games, but now has to decide whether he brings back Shelvey into a 4-4-1-1 or keeps two up front and maybe starts with Dave Mooney with McLeod back on the bench in what I prefer playing a later impact role in games. Then who will play right-back if Richardson doesn't make the trip and who will start in goal at Brunton Park, a game by rights that should have been the last game of the season
Oh and finally before I go to bed for half an hour, if you want a bloody good laugh read this Charlton Life thread
with great banter from Northwich Victoria and Witton Albion fans.