ARGYLE bowed out of the Checkatrade Trophy on Tuesday with a 2-0 defeat at Newport County but, having already been eliminated from the competition, manager Derek Adams took the opportunity to field a very young side.
It was a strategy based on giving his senior players a rest ahead of the important trip to Luton in Sky Bet League One and allowing the youngsters to gain experience.
On the Trophy as a whole, the financial input from Premier League clubs has made it a worthwhile competition for EFL clubs, although it does place an extra strain on the playing time of squads.
“We were out of the competition [before the Newport game] and we have to look at what is important to us, which is Luton on Saturday,” said Derek. “I’m here to look after Plymouth Argyle Football Club and nothing else.
“It [Checkatrade Trophy format] works for the Premier League clubs because their youngsters are getting games against League opposition. The Premier League is putting in a million pounds each year, so it’s financially beneficial for Football League clubs.
“If you progress and do well in the competition, you can earn more money than winning a game in the League Cup. The competition is here to help the majority of the youth players in English football improve, make the England national team better and produce players for the Premier League.
“That also filters down to teams like us because we take young kids on loan and they get vast experience. Chairmen and chief executives have had the opportunity to go against it but they haven’t because there is a lot of money at stake.
“As a football manager, it becomes difficult to have more games. As a League, we play 46 games and we certainly shouldn’t have another three on to that, plus the other cup games.
“To improve the quality, I believe there should be a reduction in games. We’ve already had that saga before but people won’t do it because it reduces revenue into football clubs. In the end, what happens in life and business, it’s all about pound signs and I don’t think that’s going to change.”