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Hurst After More of the Same From Sears
Thursday, 18th Oct 2018 17:25

Town boss Paul Hurst is hoping striker Freddie Sears can maintain the excellent form he showed in the first win of the season at Swansea prior to the international break. The 28-year-old was widely named the Blues’ man of the match as Town came from behind to pull off a surprise 3-2 victory at the Liberty Stadium.

“Someone was mentioning Freddie the other day, saying there seemed to be a little fuss that he wasn’t involved,” Hurst said when asked about Sears’s recent return to the team after a spell where he wasn’t in the matchday 18 for one reason or another.

“I think I left him out once and then he was injured, so things can always grow legs and get carried away.

“Freddie’s been fine, he’s that type of character that gets on with his job, comes into work, has often got a smile on his face and is a character in the changing room without being the loudest or anything.

“And his performance at Swansea rightly drew praise from the fans, his team-mates, myself and we’re hoping that we can see more of that.”

Hurst believes a lone striker doesn’t have to be a traditional big number nine: “One hundred per cent it doesn’t have to be a big target man as such, the stereotype. Often what they do have is pace. Freddie’s certainly not slow but I think Freddie’s biggest asset for me is his movement.

“There’s the saying that the first couple of yards is in the head and I think with Freddie he sees things very quickly and at times he’s reliant on his team-mates understanding what he’s going to do and where he’s going to move to.

“I think at Swansea that worked well on numerous occasions to certainly create a couple of chances and that’s down to an understanding from his team-mates as well.

“But you’ve got to be willing to pass the ball at times when you get it, there’s no point in just booting it above his head and hoping that he’ll win his headers. He’ll try his heart out for us but that’s not his strength clearly.”

Sears benefited from midfielder Andre Dozzell, who was making his first start of the season, threading through passes at Swansea and Hurst says the 19-year-old is a good fit in his team at present.

“I have to say not just with Freddie Sears but with anyone,” he said. “He sees that pass, I think what you do get with that combination is two lads that have got bright minds in terms of football. That’s not saying they’re thick off the pitch either, I daren’t comment on that!

“I thought there were a couple of instances at Swansea, one where he’s put him through, one where Freddie was just offside, then he timed the run correctly and he was through on goal.

“And that’s something that is a major strength of Andre, seeing something different rather than the pass that probably most of the players will see.

“That is a fit [in the team], there’s no doubt about that. I think Kayden Jackson could benefit from that as well in terms of how quickly he sees a situation therefore stops defenders getting in as good a position to stop and attack, so I think for numerous players that can help and benefit.”

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