QPR manager Mark Warburton says he elected to play Osman Kakay in the centre of defence rather than Jordy De Wijs in his side’s 1-0 defeat to Huddersfield on Saturday, in an attempt to keep Terriers striker Fraizer Campbell quiet.
De Wijs, a January loan signing from Hull City, had started QPR’s last two games prior to Saturday’s match, helping his side keep clean sheets in wins over Bristol City and Wycombe.
However, it was Kakay who got the nod ahead of De Wijs for that clash with the Terriers, which saw the Dutchman dropped to the bench, ending the day as an unused substitute.
Now it seems as though that is a change that Warburton elected to make for tactical, rather than fitness reasons.
Speaking about De Wijs’ absence after the game, the QPR manager was quoted by West London Sport as saying: “We just felt that in the away game, and if you’ve watched them recently, Campbell drops in and creates the overload in midfield – that’s what they do very well.
“So we wanted someone who would go in and mark him. Ossie’s job was to go in there and be tight to him – and he never really threatened us.”
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Indeed, it seems as though De Wijs still has the backing of Warburton going forward, as he went on to add: “Nothing against Jordy, who has been excellent in the two games he’s played. Geoff likewise before that. It was just about using the squad and Ossie did a good job for us. It was purely tactical.”
Following that defeat, QPR are now 13th in the Championship table ahead of their clash with local rivals Millwall on Wednesday night.
This may well have been a sensible decision for Warburton to make.
There are obviously going to be occasions where managers need to change their side to deal with a specific threat, and it seems as though this is one of those times.
Indeed, with Warburton suggesting that Campbell had a quiet afternoon on Saturday, it seems as though he will be happy with the way that that particular decision played out.
It is also worth noting that with De Wijs having not played much football prior to those back to back starts for QPR, he himself may have benefitted from a break here, meaning this seems as though it may have worked well for the club, despite the overall result.