DEREK ADAMS set Carl McHugh quite the task during this campaign’s pre-season regime, but the boss has praised the Irishman’s ability to seamlessly adapt to a new challenge.
Despite plying his trade in the centre of midfield for the Greens – a position he never played during his first season at Home Park – the 22 year-old has been a source of commitment, solidity and class throughout Argyle’s 2015-16 season.
The lesser-known past experiences of both Adams and McHugh played a part in the positional change, with McHugh’s schoolboy days including stints in midfield, and Derek’s track record of using well-rounded defenders higher up the pitch.
“We gave him an opportunity to play in midfield,” said Adams. “We started it off in the first game of pre-season and went from there. It gave him a bit of time to bed into that position. I always wanted to try and get to a four at the back, rather than a three at that stage in the season.
"I’ve done it many times in my career; I’ve had players that are defenders that can play in midfield. You do need a defensive-minded player in that area of the pitch. He’s one that can that can do a job in there, to win the ball back and go and play and give it to the creative players in the team.
“Carl McHugh gets all the plaudits from me. By playing the position he has done, he’s played very well for us this season. He’s 22 years of age and he’s got a long way to go in his career at Plymouth Argyle. We’re delighted with the way he’s progressing. He’s moved from a central defender position into central midfield, and he’s coped well with that.”