West Brom boss Slaven Bilic insists Darnell Furlong hasn’t done anything wrong despite the full-back not starting a game for the past month.
The summer signing had enjoyed a good start to life in the West Midlands, however he hasn’t started since the 1-0 defeat to Stoke City in January, with Dara O’Shea preferred.
Naturally a centre-back, the young Irishman has given Albion a real solidity in the back four since he has come into the XI, with the Baggies unbeaten in four.
And, speaking to the Express & Star, Bilic revealed that the defensive balance O’Shea offers means he is better suited to the team right now.
“It’s as I said, it’s about balance. We wanted to find the balance in the team. At one stage of the season we were lacking creativity, we were not dangerous enough – we weren’t creating much.
“When Grady (Diangana) got injured, Matheus (Pereira) got suspended, some players had a dip in form and we were not fluid enough. Then we needed him, from the back, and he was also doing well. In this moment, now, we have to find the balance between defence and offence. That stability at the back – that’s what we’ve found in Dara.”
Furlong is likely to be on the bench tomorrow as West Brom travel to Bristol City.
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This makes total sense and it’s good to see Bilic explain his decision and you would imagine that the fans understand where he is coming from.
Clearly, he sees Furlong as a very good attacking full-back and O’Shea is superior defensively, which is a fair assessment.
With goals and chances not a problem right now, Albion require a solid defence, so O’Shea starts. As we know, things can change quickly in football and Furlong is a useful options to have if more width and quality from deep is needed.
Thoughts? Let us know in the comments below.