Moore: I had to change my mind over using subs

Darren Moore hadn’t planned to use some of his subs in today’s FA Cup tie with Mansfield … but ended up praising Michael Smith after seeing the striker come off the bench to net two late goals and seal Wednesday’s place in the third round draw.

Moore named several fringe players in his starting line-up but, after watching the Owls go a goal down to Mansfield and then show little threat of turning the tie around, he introduced Smith into the action with 25 minutes remaining.

He was joined soon afterwards by skipper Barry Bannan, replacing the injured Lee Gregory, and the influence and added quality of the pair played a big part in Wednesday’s fightback to win 2-1.

Moore said afterwards: “To be honest, I didn’t want to put some of the subs on today. They weren’t meant to come on but I felt I had to because of the way the game was going.

“When I did, Michael Smith did what he does best and scores two goals. I thought the first goal was excellent, one of real quality and knocked the wind out of their sails a little bit.

“Then we got the second goal, might have added a third with Patto’s effort and we’re through to the third round.”

Moore added: “I thought we had quite a few off it today. It’s understandable because maybe it was our lack of minutes on the pitch as I rotated the pack today.

“But we are through to the third round and, without a doubt, we will see the future benefit of them stretching their legs, with the league games coming up.”

Speaking further about the fringe players, the manager said: “I don’t blame them solely because one or two have been stop-start with injuries but it’s a clear message to them how detailed they’ve got to be in their work.

“When you’re not quite in and around it, it shows how far the game can stretch away from you. It was a clear message from a learning perspective.

“In terms of that and minutes in them, it will have done them the world of good.”

Gregory and Michael Ihiekwe were both forced off after taking knocks in the second half and Moore said: “We’ll have to wait and see where both of them are at, but hopefully they’re not too serious. We’ll assess them over the next 48 hours.”








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