WAGGA United coach James Samson plans to shake up his squad ahead of Sunday's Pascoe Cup showdown with Lake Albert.
United returned to the winner's list with a 4-0 victory over Cootamundra last weekend, a result that moved them to sixth spot and just two points behind fourth-placed Lake Albert.
But with six rounds completed, Samson, in his first season in charge of the Pascoe Cup team, has now seen enough to start making changes.
"We're going to be making a few changes this weekend, just to shuffle things around and give blokes some opportunities who have been working really hard the last few weeks so I'm excited to see how they go," Samson said.
"I'm not one to change things right away. I like to talk to all my players one-on-one to tell them my expectations of themselves and what I want them to work on and improve. Then I'll afford them the time to show me what they can do and obviously it's not starting to work out, at the end of the day it's the best thing for the team is to try and switch things up to find that right chemistry."
Ben Jones is one reserve grade player who has impressed Samson enough to earn a promotion to Pascoe Cup on Sunday as a central midfielder.
It's all about keeping first graders on their toes and rewarding reserve grade players who are doing everything right.
"In terms of timing now, we're six rounds in and it's now time to shuffle things around a little bit," he said.
"I like the boys to keep questioning where they're going to be each week and there's definitely going to be a handful of boys that are going to be in between first and second grade.
"One particular one I've been impressed with is Ben Jones in second grade and he's going to be pushed into first grade this weekend. He's worked really hard and his overall attitude this year has been phenomenal so he's going to be rewarded."
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Wagga United's 4-0 win over Cootamundra was needed ahead of a crucial fortnight where they meet Lake Albert and Tolland.
"There was a lot of fantastic things I saw against Coota that I have seen consistently this year and in talking with the leadership group and the boys in the squad, we're capable of a lot more and it's just about getting that right chemistry to ensure we're improving each week," Samson said.
"In terms of the football, I've been blown away by the boys working their arses off to play the style of football that I want to play and now it's just about continuing that building of confidence to know that we can take it to teams.
"I never tell them to play a different way or change it for a particular game depending on our opponents. I want to go out there playing our style of football and we adapt as we go and the guys are starting to really understand that and show it on the field."
As for the six points on offer in those important fixtures, Samson believes every game in this year's Pascoe Cup competition is proving to be difficult.
"I reckon a lot of the other coaches across the board would agree with me but the competition in Pascoe this year is really decent across the board," he said.
"There's obviously some really quality teams but even in saying that, every team we've played so far has got quality and it's just about maintaining that for 90 minutes.
"The season and the opponents we're coming up against is exactly what I was expecting and that's what I remind the boys each week, there's going to be no easy game no matter who we play and to expect a tough opponent every week."
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