CHRIS Wilder knows that Oxford United ’s performance against Bradford was nowhere near good enough, writes MARK EDWARDS.
But the U’s manager said that with nine players unavailable to start the match, his hands were tied in terms of the team he picked.
Naming Sean Rigg as a substitute was the only selection dilemma facing Wilder ahead of Saturday’s match.
And with Lee Cox playing despite not being fully fit, the formation of his side also picked itself.
“I don’t think I have been dealt a great hand at the moment,” Wilder said.
“That’s not me trying to spin anything, that’s me being honest.
“I had nine players who I couldn’t start the game with, and some big players as well. I think people appreciate that because it is a massive number.
“The supporters tried to raise us today – and yes there were bits and pieces said from some people – but they could see the lack of confidence out there.”
He added: “Usually in a 23-man squad you would have 12 decisions to make (for the bench), but today I had one.
“Riggy was the only decision I had to make.
“Leven, Smalley and Worley were on the bench, but they can’t start games at the moment.
“And as for formation, I couldn’t play 4-4-2, so I was very limited.
“The display was not good enough, but I would say please judge us when we have everyone back.
“Of course, I understand that football is not always like that and you don’t always have the opportunity to pick everybody, but nine players is a huge amount.”