Doyle will be Clingan's replacement

12 November 2010 08:46
Team selection dilemma for Boothroyd Coventry City will be without their Northern Ireland international midfielder Sammy Clingan who wil be out of the game for several weeks following a knee injury. Boothroyd confirmed many fans fears that Clingan suffered knee ligament damage when he tackled Nathan Tyson on Tuesday night, explaining: “It looked like the Gascoigne tackle in the Cup Final when he did it and I was a little concerned and then he got up straight away, but he has just opened up his knee a little bit and that is part of taking the rough with the smooth." “It is a knee ligament issue which we have to make sure we get right because we don’t want him to get secondary or further injuries to it, so we have to make sure he is 100 per cent fit before he comes back.” Sky Blues boss Aidy Boothroyd knows Clingan will be missed, but he refuses to be negative about the mounting injury crisis at the club and  believes it will give other players the chance to prove themselves as they step up to the plate. Boothroyd takes positives from the injury situation as it helps to make his team selection slightly easier, knowing that he cannot pick certain players. The absence of Clingan means that Michael Doyle will be give the chance to prove he is worthy of wearing the sky blue shirt. Boothroyd said, “We know that we are going to lose players through injuries and the guys who come in have got to do a job and show what they are all about." “I think Sammy is going to be out for three to four weeks and, along with Ben Turner, it means we have lost a couple of players down the spine of the team, but that’s what we have a squad for." "Many people tell me James McPake was arguably one of the players of the season last year, so he gets his chance after being on the sidelines. Michael Doyle went on against Forest and did a good job, so he has an opportunity now to show what he is all about and stake his claim." “I could put Doyler in there, I could move Aron Gunnarsson across or play three with a sitter.  I could play Carl Baker off the front and play a diamond. That’s the quality of the depth of squad I have got that I can change it up and up the top end Clive Platt is back in contention for the weekend so I have got a selection dilemma.” The question on many fans lips is whether Marlon King will be given a start. In the few games he has appeared in, he has shown he is not yet fit enough to compete and is lacking match sharpness. The conundrum though is whether to play King in order to regain the levels of skill and fitness he had, but lack the quality required to be effective, or to use him as an impact substitute thereby slowing his return to full match fitness. “When you have got a player like Marlon with the quality and goals in him that he has it is a dilemma for me because he is a player who the opposition don’t want to play because they know he can score,” said Boothroyd, “but at the same time we have got to look after him and make sure we don’t push him too hard too soon. “There is a bit of ring rustiness there, which you do get when you have been out for a period of time. He had three really good chances on Tuesday night which, when he has got a couple of games in him, there would be three goals for us, but that’s why we have got to be patient with him." “Clive and Lukas have been outstanding together and have scored and made goals for each other, so it is something I have got to think about, or I could play all three. The options are there and we have to make sure we don’t become predictable in what we do.” Coventry City's other striker Freddy Eastwood has returned to training and is approaching full match fitness again following knee surgery and he could figure in Boothroyd's weekend plans. Boothroyd confirmed, “Freddy is another one who is back and it is a lovely situation because he is on fire in training and scoring goals all the time, and what it does is gives me the opportunity to start with two different front men at Palace because we have got that much fire power now and provided we are right at the back, we are a threat to anyone and one of the few teams that are looking to score goals in every game we play.” Looking ahead to Saturday's visit to Selhurst Park, Boothroyd warned, “I think we are getting them at a dangerous time because of their win over Watford. They have got some good players in the team and their position in the league is probably a false one." “George Burley has been at the top end of the table several times with the clubs he has had before so it will be a very difficult game, but if we want to be successful we have got to go to places like Crystal Palace and put on a good show and give our fans something to talk and shout about.”