It was a really good result on Wednesday night, no doubt, but the performance left something to be desired in Mowbray’s eyes at least. We looked a lot better after Simms came on at half time, and Ba and Matete came on in the centre of midfield – with Jack Clarke being available again after suspension, that all means Tony Mowbray has a few decisions to make today.
Goalkeeper: Anthony Patterson
Patterson had another good game in midweek, with the save he made just before our opener pivotal. He’ll start.
Defence: Luke O’Nien, Bailey Wright, Danny Batth, Dennis Cirkin
After a good clean sheet, the defence will likely stay the same today. Bailey Wright’s done well since his return to the team, and Luke O’Nien has looked assured at full back. I thought Cirkin was a bit wayward going forward on Wednesday, but he’ll complete the defence with Danny Batth.
Midfield: Corry Evans, Abdoullah Ba
I think Michut would have started on Wednesday had he been fit, and it wasn’t until Corry Evans and Elliot Embleton went off to be replaced by Ba and Matete on Wednesday that we took a bit more control of the game. Evans had a rare off night, and will be looking to make amends, and I think he’ll partner Ba today. I thought he was brilliant on Wednesday – he always makes space to receive the ball, always wants it, and is happy changing direction when he receives it. I think he’ll get the nod today. I hope so, anyway.
Attacking midfield: Patrick Roberts, Alex Pritchard, Jack Clarke
It’ll be harsh on Amad, but after two starts in a few days he might begin this one on the bench, despite his late goal to see the three points against Huddersfield. Clarke will come straight back in, and barring injury Roberts and Pritchard are pretty much shoo-ins, too.
Striker: Ellis Simms
A striker? A real-life striker? There’s every chance. After a good 45 minutes on Wednesday, I think Simms will begin today’s game, maybe getting an hour or so. Given Mowbray’s spoke about the importance of starting the game well at home and getting early goals, I think he’ll get Simms in the starting XI, and hope that he can help the team do just that.