A HALF-time substitution from Argyle manager Derek Adams paid dividends in their 4-1 thumping of Carlisle United, as they reverted back to a familiar formation.
The Greens went into the break 1-0 ahead thanks to a brilliant effort from Jake Jervis, but had regularly found themselves under pressure in the opening 45 minutes. Adams’ response was to replace an unfortunate Gregg Wylde with Josh Simpson, dropping Carl McHugh back into a central defensive role as part of a 3-5-2 setup.
“I had to take Gregg off,” said Derek. “I said to Gregg ‘listen, it’s not your fault you’re taken off at this moment in time.’
“It’s one of these things where somebody’s got to be sacrificed, and he was the sacrifice tonight. It was a shame for us because he had been in the game.
“We had to [change], from the point of view that they were causing a bit of trouble. We had to be on the front foot, and then we played off of them, and we caused them even more trouble than they were causing us in the first half. It was important that we tried to put the onus on them. In the first half we got into wide areas, but probably not enough.”
It did not take long for the change to have a positive effect, as goals from Graham Carey, Reuben Reid and another from Jervis but the game beyond Carlisle within 20 minutes of the restart. The boss praised his side’s quality and versatility to put the changed strategy into full effect.
“We are very comfortable because we have got players who have played it [a 3-5-2] before,” said Derek. “But we’ve also got good players who can go and change, and strikers are not a problem. So it was quite easy to do, and obviously it worked for us.
“I think that we were a lot better than them in the second half. We knew that they had wide players playing in the wing back areas, and they had a back three where the centre halves were pushing forward and leaving one-for-one at the back.
“We were aware of that, we changed things around, and it benefited us.”