Priskin back in the cold – literally
TAMAS Priskin is back in the cold – but this time it’s literally rather than metaphorically.
The striker felt he was in manager Paul Jewell’s ‘bad books’ at the start of the season, but suddenly leapt from bottom of the pecking order to surprise starter for Town prior to the international break.
But his chances of retaining that place in tomorrow’s match at Nottingham Forest have been hit by sub-zero conditions in his native Hungary.
Having hit three goals in two international friendlies over the last week – a brace in a 5 0 home win over Liechtenstein and one in a 2-1 defeat in Poland – the 25-year-old was unable to rejoin his club team mates yesterday morning as planned.
“He’s stuck in Hungary because it’s minus five and the planes can’t take off,” revealed Town manager Paul Jewell.
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“Fair play, he rang me last night (Wednesday) and said he couldn’t get a plane out of wherever he was. We’ll see if and when he gets back and go from there.”
Priskin was one of five changes made by Jewell for last weekend’s visit of rock-bottom Doncaster, with Carlos Edwards and Jason Scotland both dropped.
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It didn’t prevent the Blues falling to a third successive defeat though, with the Suffolk side slipping to 15th in the Championship table.
Jewell must now decide whether to stick with his 4-4-2 diamond formation, or whether to introduce some width through the likes of Lee Martin, Josh Carson and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas – those three all having made an impact off the bench last time out.
“I’ve got an open mind about what the team will be for Saturday as we sit here now on Thursday morning,” said the Blues boss.
“Jason (Scotland) is fine. He’s got his head down, hasn’t sulked and trained fine. And I’ll have a look at Carlos today as he’s only just got back (from international duty with Trindad and Tobago).
“Josh (Carson) and Lee (Martin) definitely improved us second half against Doncaster, but I think the way we were playing you could have brought Mickey Mouse on and he’d have made an impact.
“I don’t think Jay (Emmanuel-Thomas) is ready at the minute to start game after game after game. He sums us up a little bit at the moment – when he’s good he’s very, very good, but he’s not got the consistency.
“He’s getting fitter all the time though and who knows, he could get in the team and never look back.”
He added: “We’ve played the diamond formation; it’s worked a treat in some games, in others it hasn’t.
“You can talk all day about systems though, at the end of the day it’s about players making the right decisions. It doesn’t matter how many you play at the back, if you give away simple goals then you’re going to lose matches.
“It’s something I’ll look at and will decide on Friday morning what to do.”
Midfielder Lee Bowyer (hamstring and back) and striker Nathan Ellington (calf) both returned to training at the start of the week and are available again.
However, centre-backs Ibrahima Sonko (hamstring) and Damien Delaney (foot) are still out of action, while striker Daryl Murphy (hamstring) only returned to training yesterday.
– For full match preview, see tomorrow’s EADT and Evening Star.