Danny Cowley spoke at length about Tranmere and also gave an insight into team selection at yesterday’s Press Conference.
DC was really looking forward to the match at Tranmere: under lights for the first time there for him – and recalled playing there for Hornchurch in an FA Cup tie. He’d had positive results there but it had always been tough at a ground with vociferous and influential support. DC was delighted Tranmere got promoted particularly after their slow start and thought Micky Mellon had done a fantastic job. He took the view that Tranmere were too big for Non-League and it was good to see them back. The rivalry with Imps had been good for both clubs during City’s promotion season – two well-supported clubs driving each other on. DC expected Tranmere to try and play through the thirds and had good ball handling midfielders to do that. They benefitted from the continuity of the defenders and keeper. Norwood was an obvious goal threat who could do everything – run beyond, drop deep and score the goals.
Cheltenham: DC didn’t dwell too much on the match. It was a pleasing performance which lacked technical execution at times but great perseverance had shone through. He acknowledged that as most Imps goals are scored in the 12-yard area it was important to get bodies in the box but away from home it was also important to ensure that the defence were set up behind the attack.
Team Selection: DC outlined team selection for Saturday to Saturday matches is a lot easier and selection is normally tied up by Thursday. When there are midweek games the selection is left until much later, often the day of the game to allow for waiting on recovery. This gives management the opportunity to fully assess all the GPS data and stats from training/previous match to assess who are the fittest and best prepared. DC described the other factors taken into account including opposition strengths and weaknesses. He was aware that the starting 11 had been doing well but there was also a group behind them that were focused and determined. In summary, DC could see the benefits of both continuity and freshening things up but he had the benefit of all the assessments so he could make intelligent fact-based decisions to get that balance right.
Player Training: DC talked about how the players get individual one to one assessments each week regarding their performances. They are all given the relevant video clips of their last performance in addition to video clips of their next opponent that they will be matched up against. Naturally, that enabled the players to understand opponents style whilst simultaneously improving their knowledge and personal development.
Miscellaneous: Great to have Lee Frecklington back – ‘you’ always miss your best players especially ones with a wealth of experience and the character that LF has. DC is not worried about the player load due to having options and with the squad being in a good place. Whilst Imps had played on the league’s smallest pitch at Cheltenham, Tranmere had played on the second biggest at MK although they had home advantage so there wasn’t a lot in it.
Danny Cowley prematch
Posted by BBC Radio Lincolnshire Sport on Monday, 1 October 2018
— Vital Lincoln City (@VitalLincoln) October 2, 2018