Didn’t the manager say yesterday that he was going to use tonight to rest some players and give others a chance?
Well he hasn’t done it; he’s named pretty much his strongest XI.
All the guys who have let him down so far this season keep their places.
All the players badly in need of a rest are in the team. He’s swapped a couple around from the weekend, but not enough.
His tactical system is, once again, hard to comprehend.
The meaningless nature of the match and the guarantee he’ll keep his job whatever the score-line has clearly influenced his team selection; it’s all caution to the wind. He’s gone with a 3-5-2.
Except … he’s got full backs playing as wingers, a right back in central defence, a midfielder in central defence.
It’s about time we dealt with that; Bitton can play at centre back at a push but we shouldn’t be relying on him there.
Elhamed was signed as a full back, and whilst a better bet than Bitton it’s not his natural role.
Oh, and unless you’re classing Ryan Christie as a forward, which Lennon does but the player clearly isn’t, we have one striker.
Furthermore, he’s got Rogic and Christie in the same starting eleven which is exceedingly rare as they’re both best deployed in “the hole”.
I mean, I’m past the stage of trying to figure Lennon’s tactics out or what the thinking is behind some of them.
He’s in a no-lose position tonight, so it really doesn’t matter to him whether this is a stunning success or a catastrophic failure.
The team lines up thus: Barkas; Elhamed, Bitton, Ajer; Frimpong, Brown, McGregor; Rogic, Laxalt; Christie, Edouard.
The substitutes are: Bain, Hazard, Jullien, Taylor, Ajeti, Klimala, Soro, Ntcham, Henderson, Welsh