Paul Tisdale keeps tactics under wraps ahead of Shots game
PAUL Tisdale is keeping his tactics close to his chest ahead of Exeter City's match with Aldershot Town, saying he will not be drawn on whether he will start with one or two strikers.
Tisdale didn't name a recognised centre forward for City's home defeat to Torquay United on Monday, choosing instead to name Alan Gow up front and leave leading scorer Jamie Cureton on the bench.
It was a move which arguably back fired as City failed to score despite creating numerous chances throughout the 90 minutes.
Cureton and Spanish striker Guillem Bauza went on midway through the second half as Tisdale switched from a 4-5-1 formation to a 4-3-1-2 line-up. However, he says there is no guarantee that City will be lining up with two strikers when they face struggling Aldershot on Saturday.
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"I will leave those things to later in the week and certain things will stay behind closed doors and my selection will be one of them," Tisdale told Echo Sport following Monday's 1-0 loss.
"Sometimes having more strikers on the pitch, you become more vulnerable.
"As we have shown away at Cheltenham when we were chasing the lead.
"It is not all about how many strikers you have on the pitch. Someone has to provide the ball into the box, someone has to link-up the play, someone has to cover the pitch and someone has to mop up the pieces.
"So it is not about how many strikers you have on the pitch. I maintain (against Torquay), I don't think we did too bad at all."
City looked as though they were missing John O'Flynn during the Torquay match.
The striker pulled his hamstring in a 1-1 draw coincidentally against Torquay United at Plainmoor 13 days prior to the return match in Exeter.
His energy and form up front had seen him nail down a regular place in the starting line-up.
However, Tisdale added that the players that came in should be able to fill the void he had left.
"Of course (we missed him), but we have enough good players. I have no problem with the players we had on the pitch," said Tisdale, who admitted the home form and crowd is proving a problem for his players.
City have won just one of their last seven games at St James's Park and the Exeter boss says the anxiety and nervousness of the fans is getting to the players on the pitch.
"They have to release from the anxiety and be a bit more pragmatic," he said.
"It's probably a good idea not to worry about it too much (about our home form) and get onto the next game.
"But it stacks up and it is no coincidence, we keep having the same problem at home."
A bright note for Tisdale in the Torquay United match was the performance of debutant Mark Molesley.
The right-sided midfielder, who joined City having been released from his contract at Bournemouth earlier this month, put in an energetic first-half display and will be in the frame again to start against Aldershot.
Tisdale said: "He hadn't played for over a month now and he played the first half in very difficult conditions into that wind.
"I thought he played with a lot of endeavour and he is going to be a good egg for us."
Predicted City line-up: Krysiak, Tully, Woodman, Coles, Baldwin, Bennett, Oakley, Gow, Molesley, Bauza, Keohane