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Hurst: No Ill Effects for Dozzell But Kenlock Still Out
Thursday, 4th Oct 2018 13:41

Blues boss Paul Hurst, whose squad is travelling to Swansea for Saturday’s match this afternoon, says Andre Dozzell came through his first 14 minutes for the first team in more than a year without a problem having come on as a sub on Tuesday, but that Myles Kenlock remains on the sidelines with his ankle injury.

Dozzell, 19, finally made his return to senior competitive action against Middlesbrough having suffered a ruptured cruciate knee ligament on the opening day of last season.

Asked how the England U19 international came through the match, Hurst said: “Good, he’s been training this morning, no ill effects to my knowledge, so that’s good.

“A little chat we had coming off the pitch was that it must have been good to get back out there in front of a crowd in a competitive Championship game, so hopefully he can build on that.”

Is the midfielder ready to start against the Swans on Saturday? “We’ll see. As I’ve said, I don’t think he would go for 90 minutes, that’s my honest view. He may surprise you but that would be my view, so we’ve got to consider that.

“But ultimately we need a result and I’ve got to pick which team I think is best to get that.”

Hurst says he’s keen to include youngsters in his teams, however at the right time and not en masse.

“I think there have been a few,” he reflected. “I think if you compare that to last season, circumstances dictated when some of those lads did play and I think that in turn has given some people the wrong idea either where they’re at or expectations about what these players can do at this moment in time.

“You have to be careful, I had a conversation with someone here, they said it would almost be good if you played the youth team [who are currently top of their league]. The youth team wouldn’t win a game of football [at this level].

“There are the baby-ish arguments that we haven’t won a game of football yet either, which we know, but at the same time let’s be realistic about it.

“I’m all for young players playing if it’s the right time for them and I think that they can make a difference for us.”

Many fans were impressed with the performances of Dozzell, Tristan Nydam, who is now on loan at St Johnstone, and Flynn Downes during the West Ham friendly but Hurst didn’t believe they were the right trio to start the season proper the following week against Blackburn.

“That seems a long time ago,” he said a touch ruefully. “I don’t think personally that would be the right midfield to start.

“There are always counterarguments and ways of looking at it but the situation we’re in, do you want too many young lads out there? They might play with that freedom, but it might be too much.

“I’ve personally seen one or two things where I think it’s been difficult for one or two of the younger players, but at the same time I’m going to pick a team that I think is right on the day. And if that includes young lads then hopefully they can rise to that challenge.”

Hurst was also pleased with Freddie Sears’s contribution from the bench against Boro: “He was lively. I thought he did pretty well when he came on at the weekend against Birmingham as well, so he’s clearly going to come into my thoughts.

“He used his experience, his knowledge of the game to try and cause the Middlesbrough lads a different problem.

“It’s pretty obvious he’s not going to out-fight people and things like that. Nothing wrong with admitting that and understanding where your strengths lie and I think he played in that second half fully aware of that and picked up some nice areas for us.”

Looking ahead to Saturday, he says Myles Kenlock remains out, along with longer-term absentees Ellis Harrison (ankle), Jon Walters (achilles), Emyr Huws (knee), Teddy Bishop (hamstring) and Tom Adeyemi (achilles), but that there are no new injury concerns, while Matthew Pennington is back from his one-match ban.

“No, I think we’re alright on that,” he said. “The only one who’s trained today to a degree but is not right, I’ve just had a conversation with him quickly just then, is Myles, who I can tell is still feeling that ankle. Credit to him for giving it a go but he’s not quite right just yet.”

Asked why the squad is travelling today rather than on Friday as is usually the case for away games, Hurst said: “I think it’s far too long a journey for the players. Nothing guarantees you anything but you want to try and give yourself the best chance.

“We looked into flying but that was something we couldn’t do. The trains worked out too long so we’re setting off today and are training down there tomorrow. We feel that’s the best option available to us.

“It’s about trying to do the right things. Again, it doesn’t guarantee you anything but I’d rather it be that way than start questioning the preparation and people thinking that we’re not at least trying to do things properly.”

Did owner Marcus Evans take any persuading to pay for the squad to stay for the additional day? “Not to my knowledge.”

Meanwhile, Hurst says there’s no news on the prospect of the Blues signing a free agent striker. Asked whether there were any developments on that front, the Town boss responded simply: “No.”

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Fatboy added 14:00 - Oct 4
I haven't seen much of Dozzell, but Downes has always impressed me whenever he's played. Ideally, you'd want a mix of youth and experience across the field so one of those two with Skuse in central midfield would seem like a good idea.

JewellintheTown added 14:02 - Oct 4
Paul Hurst should pass the list he comes up with to the tea lady so she can fix it for him. Can't be much worse.

Woodbridgian added 14:03 - Oct 4
Think Mr Hurst is drinking at the last chance saloon on Saturday anything other than a convincing win and that will be it I’m afraid. Bold move to try a new approach but unfortunately looking like it not going to work out. If we do need to make a change the international break gives us the perfect opportunity.

marco007 added 14:03 - Oct 4
Granted there are no guarantees with youth, but then the same came be said about more experienced players.
Let's be honest, Knudsen has been awful as has Spence, Nolan etc
I just wish that the ones that are played regularly would justify their positions!

ronnyblue added 14:08 - Oct 4
The man is out of his mind. The youngsters may not win but they would certainly play better than the load of rubbish he supplied. When will he have the honesty to admit that the job is beyond his abilities and resign.

ronnyblue added 14:08 - Oct 4
The man is out of his mind. The youngsters may not win but they would certainly play better than the load of rubbish he supplied. When will he have the honesty to admit that the job is beyond his abilities and resign.

BlueySwede added 14:15 - Oct 4
Seriously, how far off are Bishop, Huws and Adeyemi to getting back into the matchday squad? Hurst is right in a way, you can´t play all the young un´s at the same time, but surely we could integrate one or two every season? (otherwise, what is the point of having an academy?)

MickMillsTash added 14:27 - Oct 4
Dozzell in for Nolan - no brainer
Dozzell showed more class in 10 minutes than anyone else has (bar Edwards in 11 games). Any forward at the club would suddenly think - if i make that run - i might get the ball- to feet !!!! I had forgotten it could be done

Lightningboy added 14:30 - Oct 4
Looks and sounds like a dead man walking..tbh I haven’t found any of his press conferences that enthralling,enthusiastic or inspiring since day one point in that interview i’m sure it sounded like he was more impressed with last season’s Shrewsbury players than what he has assembled here?..I must’ve heard that wrong or maybe I was just dozing off.

He has to go Saturday evening - even an unlikely win will just paper over a bl00dy big crack - for those saying give him more time - well time to do what exactly?..he’s not doing what we were all sold on just a few months ago - completely the opposite infact.

Remember when Mick came in and we were saying that if only we’d brought him in a few weeks earlier we could’ve maybe even made the play-offs that season..let’s not be saying that about whoever comes in next “if only so and so had come in a few weeks earlier we could’ve stayed up”.

It’s a no-brainer for me to give the job on a long term basis to Burley/Klugg/Nash & Hogg as a management team (not so fussed on Butcher as I think he’d rub players up the wrong way)..get the kids involved in the 1st team,3 or 4 inspired signings in January & I see no problem with survival..remember the last few games of last season,it was like a different club all of a sudden..also Burley has watched so many games from our stands that he knows what’s needed so there’d be no need of anyone new coming in and having to survey this mess from scratch.

Things should change now during this break - We’re dying a slow boring death under this regime.

NottsTractor added 14:31 - Oct 4
'' I had a conversation with someone here, they said it would almost be good if you played the youth team [who are currently top of their league]. The youth team wouldn’t win a game of football ''

Only reason I can see for that rationale would be to silence critics/fans which would be unfortunate for those playing in that game.

Perhaps a more pragmatic approach would be to win a game with a team he picks?

Taricco_Fan added 14:41 - Oct 4
Nolan has had ample opportunity to impose himself the creative midfielder role but has so far been largely anonymous.

Dozzell for Nolan must happen if we are to have any chance of turning things around.

naa added 14:57 - Oct 4
Anyone else worried that Sears outshone any of Hurst's signings in his brief appearance? Let's remember that he was someone most of us didn't especially want in the starting line-up last season. He now looks one of our best players.

Go figure.

I still fail to see how Hurst thinks that League 2 players will be better than the youth players we had last season. Nydam and Kenlock have way more experience at this level. Yet off they go on loan or get left out...

iamipswich added 14:58 - Oct 4
'The youth team wouldn’t win a game of football [at this level].'

And how are the senior team getting on?

rugbytomc added 16:40 - Oct 4
i agree he shouldn't chuck all the kids in at once. But why did he bring in Edun and Chalobah who are just as young as our youngsters and then send our ones out on loan? I have to admit i'm underwhelmed by Downes - he's a luke hyam type of player. But Chalobah always plays and has yet to justify that. I know Dozzell has been injured - no arguments there from me on not selecting him to protect him. But the club MUST have known that in the summer and that Bishop and Huws were likely out for the long term or for good, so why wasn't one of our 6 loan signings or our permanent signings a creative midfielder to cover that? That's what we missed all last season as well more than anything. As many have said - Nolan is not the answer. I'm not sure what he is but creative controlling midfielder he isn't

Suffolkboy added 17:31 - Oct 4
How does PH do it ? Time after time his public commentaries are boringly laboured and totally lacking in enthusiastic conviction : always he's on the defensive ,challenging the receivers of his 'wisdom ' but hinting at NOTHING to point at successful implementation of a plan , system , strategy ,coherent team selection OR even taking us along with confidence !
Very very unattractive ,so far out of his depth on current performance it rather looks as if we are week in week out frantically clutching at straws .
This won't win games , or the hearts of supporters ,and definitely not the essential points in the league .
I live in the gloaming with the light fading quickly and PH doesn't know where the candles are or how to find them !! Not sure he can strike a match ,even if he could .Is armegeddon ahead ?
But come on you Blues, we're all living in hope !

billlm added 19:28 - Oct 4
Peed off nydam went on loan and dosent feature,i like that kid he should of had a big season here, thanks paul

Brockleyblue added 20:21 - Oct 4
“There are always counterarguments and ways of looking at it but the situation we’re in, do you want too many young lads out there?" This is slightly odd logic from Paul. The point that people are making, which PH doesn't quite seem to grasp is: do we think that we would actually be in "the situation we're in", had he stuck, from the Blackburn game onwards, with that midfield trio of Dozzell, Nydam and Downes, which had played so well together (albeit in a friendly) against a full-strength Premier League team just a week earlier?

I_AM_GOD added 20:33 - Oct 4
Is it just me or does he seem to be starting to take aim at fans comments? And adding words like babyish won't help any standing with the fans.


armchaircritic59 added 21:25 - Oct 4
I get the impression PH is getting more and more like a duck. Seemingly floating sereenly in view, but paddling furiously underneath!

I'm also puzzled by the mention in the piece above about Teddy Bishop, being one of the long term injured (i know i shouldn't be!) when it was stated on here about 3/4 weeks ago, by PH i believe, that his hamstring injury was of the most minor kind! That just a week or two after a blow to the ribs sidelined him. Either the lad needs covering in bubble rap or is there something else going on!

All this injury talk just a few days after Troy Deeney played for Watford with two broken toes and some ankle ligament damage! I'm not saying every player should follow that example, but that's a hell of a statement to send to their management and supporters. Do we have anyone that wants to play for the badge so much?

stevelincsexile added 22:33 - Oct 4
Gareth Southgate said today you never know how good youngsters are until you give them a chance, are you listening PH.

KiwiTractor added 08:21 - Oct 5
Chambers out. Knudsen out. For starters.

warwickblue added 09:07 - Oct 5
Kiwitractor- You think that dismantling our defence is the way forward at this point?

armchaircritic59 added 17:58 - Oct 5
Couldn't agree more stevelincsexile. Though no longer attending games, due to a number of reasons (not state of club related!), i've seen enough games of football since the earlyish 1960's to know that the only way you truly find out whether a youngster is ready is to play him! It doesn't always work out the way people expect either. Some seemingly very promising lads, get a chance but never quite cut it, while some, less obvious youngsters, progress markedly, when given a chance to show what they can really do. You soon find out if a youngster is the real deal or a shrinking violet. Stick him right in at the deepend against one of the best teams. Does he want the ball or try to hide?

I'm a huge fan of giving the youngsters a chance, not all at once of course, but gradually a few over the course of a season. I'd much rather see that than a parade of journeymen, players clearly over the hill, (if they ever got to the top of the hill in the first place) and the usual bunch of loanees who again are on the way down, or just being sent out by their parent side to get more games, and then go back when someone else has done the dirty work!

As an aside, if i got the chance, i'd do away with the loan system completely and bring back reserve/combination team football. Teams would be responsible for their own players, fitness wise/progression wise. One of the things from the past that was better than what we have now, in my opinion!

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