Well, it was a very tough way to learn the lesson.
Now let’s hope that we don’t see such a thing again.
I can understand where Sabri Lamouchi was coming from with his team selection, I really can, so I’m not going to get as angry with him as a number of fans did last night. However, I think he took things a little bit too far with some of them.
The biggest faux pas you could argue surrounds the forwards, I wouldn’t have left Lewis Grabban out of the team completely. Even if the mantra was to keep him ‘in the fridge’, as the saying has gone all season, he has shown in the past that he can make an impact off the bench, such as the game against Millwall. So if you are swapping 75 minutes on the pitch and 15 minutes on the bench for 15 and 75 respectively, he should always be an option in the matchday squad as an emergency option.
Don’t get me wrong, squad rotation in this division is important because of the amount of games, something Lamouchi was aware of right at the start of the season, but there is a time and place for it. And after the euphoria that was Saturday night against Leeds United, to make this many changes and ruin the momentum that the team gained was beyond the pale.
And speaking of momentum, he couldn’t have picked a worse time to do it with a huge game against West Bromwich Albion coming up on the weekend, in what is arguably another ‘six-pointer’ given both team’s positions in the table.
To mess with the personnel and momentum ahead of such a big game like this is taking a major risk. He’s going to have to make sure things are 100% spot on when it comes to selection this weekend, because if he doesn’t, not only will he have lost the three points at the Hawthorns, but it makes the points dropped against Charlton look even worse.
Will we be able to bounce back against QPR?
And given how close things could be in the playoff and promotion race come the end of the weekend, those points could turn out to be even more crucial come the end of the campaign.