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Lambert: Donacien Has Done Really, Really Well
Friday, 29th Nov 2019 15:57

Manager Paul Lambert is pleased that Janoi Donacien has made the most of his opportunity since coming into the side for the injured Kane Vincent-Young and says the right-back coming into the League One team being up to speed illustrates what he has aimed for with his rotation policy.

“He’s done really, really well when he’s come in in the last few games,” Lambert said.

“He’s done really really well, he’s played back to back games and more, so he’s done well.”

Donacien started the season in the League One side but had to be content with cup football alone once Vincent-Young was signed from Colchester before returning to the league side for last Saturday's 2-2 draw with Blackpool when he was many observers' pick as man of the match.

Speaking after that match, the St Lucia-born defender said he had benefited from the cup matches which meant he was ready to go when he was called on for league games.

Lambert says this is why he has played his fringe players in the FA Cup and Leasing.com Trophy.

“Yes, because their game time is pretty similar, which is the benefit of it,” he said.

“When you look at that most of the guys are near or around each other regarding game time, one or two are still doing a little bit, but the bulk of them are up there.

“I said before, it would be unfair of me, with Kane out injured, to ask Janoi to come in and expect him to be the same as Kane if he hadn’t played any games. It would be unfair on him.”

With Donacien set to be the League One right-back for the next little while with Vincent-Young out until the end of February, some fans have speculated that younger right-backs Barry Cotter, 20, or Dylan Crowe, 18, might come into the reckoning for the cup ties, although the latter is currently out with an injury.

“If they are good enough, then I’ll throw them in, but you’ve got to be good enough,” Lambert said when asked about their chances of being involved.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re 18, 19 or 16 if I think you’re good enough I’ll let you have a go at it.

“There are one or two that have been in front of them, they probably haven’t done enough for me to say ‘OK, you can come in’.

“Other guys have done it and I've thought ‘Let's have a look at you and see what you can do,’ but it’s all on the individual, the individual forces my hand really.

But he says there is a chance there for young players that impress him: “Yeah, you have to force my hand. I played Gwion Edwards at right-back as well, so the individual has to force the manager's hand and if they do a good job, I can have a look at it.”

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wkj added 19:36 - Nov 29
Not to be a cynic, but I wonder if Lambert would have been so positive around Donacien had KVY not been announced as long term injured. I don't think Donacien has done all that bad, but I am not terribly convinced with some of his defensive play.
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