The Way Forward

ARGYLE will not change the way they play – because the way they play has brought proven success.

The Pilgrims host Carlisle United in Sky Bet League Two’s game of the weekend on Saturday, seeking a first win in five games.  

Armchair managers have not been slow to suggest that manager Derek Adams should abandon his lone forward policy in favour of employing a strike partnership up front.

However, Derek will again field just the one up front when third-placed Carlisle – one position and three points behind the Pilgrims – and the stats totally justify his chosen tactics: no Argyle manager who has held the post for longer than a year has achieved a better win percentage; only one – Ian Holloway – has a (slightly) better loss percentage.

If those figures are not convincing, you have only to look at how Argyle fared in Tuesday’s 1-0 home defeat by Notts County – when the Pilgrims made it two up front after half-time, for empirical evidence.

Derek said: “With a win percentage of over 50 percent since I have come to this football club, that’s the way we play and that’s the way we will continue to play. That is the way we have been successful.

“We have seen, a number of times this season, when we have gone two up front....Tuesday night is an indication of that – for 45 minutes in the second half, we lumped it forward to two strikers and we didn’t create a chance. Sometimes, we can all get it wrong. We became very direct and it didn’t work out for us.

“There are a lot of people who probably see the game in a different way from myself and other managers and coaches.  I’m the manager of the football club. To have finished fifth last season, to reach a play-off final and having punched above our weight...this season, we are second at this moment in time and we want to continue the progress we are making to try to get automatic promotion.”

Saturday's game against Carlisle United is in association with Prostate Cancer UK. Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men. 1 in 8 men will get prostate cancer, while the odds for black men are just 1 in 4. By donating and supporting today you’re helping to stop prostate cancer being a killer.