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Sam panned for second string choice


Filed: Wednesday, 18th December 2013
By: Staff Writer


Sam Allardyce's apparent decision to refrain from employing a first choice XI at Tottenham tonight has been met with derision in some quarters.

Allardyce revealed yesterday that he would be "using the squad to its full intent" at White Hart Lane when the two local rivals meet in the quarter final of the Capital One Cup.

"I would have loved to have come to this game with a bigger squad," he said. "We will play the team that has the desire and the energy to go out there and give a great account of themselves against a very good side."

Those comments, which appear to point to a weaker team being played tonight, have led to criticism in some quarters. Martin Samuel, writing in the Mail today accused Allardyce of "spurning one of the few chances he has to win a trophy", adding: "If Allardyce was playing the reserves with an eye on gaining momentum against Manchester United, that would be different.

"Had he decided that Saturday’s lacklustre display was reason enough for changes, and some of his first-team regulars were not up to the task of taking on a rattled Tottenham team, fair enough.

"But playing the reserves in a quarter-final against a major rival because the players that got outclassed by Sunderland need to recharge for the visit to Old Trafford? That is voodoo economics.

"Everything Allardyce appears to be rejecting is what really defines a club, long term. It is the stuff of memories and schoolboy scrapbooks and father-and-son tickets and days out, the delight of which will be taken to the grave."

Supporters are fairly mixed over news of a potentially-weakened West Ham team. KUMB member k-r-c agreed with Samuel's sentiments, calling for a 'best XI' scenario. "We have Man Utd at Old Trafford at the weekend, we cannot score in a brothel, the chances are we are going to lose easily up there so why not just stick a full strength team out tonight?" he asked.

"That still gives them a week until Arsenal at home, which we have more chance of taking a point from."

Meanwhile the celestial insect argued that regardless of being just two games from Wembley, the league should remain a priority. "While I feel very sorry for our loyal fans going to the game, I should hope Allardyce does prioritise the league.

"What are the consequences of going out of the Cup, compared to relegation?"





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