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[01 OCT 99] COVENTRY CITY FC NEWS
McSheffrey Withdrawn From First Team Duty

Coventry’s manager Gordon Strachan has withdrawn teenaged striker Gary McSheffrey from the heat of battle for the youngster’s own good.

The local youngster, who became Coventry’s youngest ever player last season at Aston Villa, celebrated his 17th birthday in August, but found himself in the first team in both Worthington Cup matches against Tranmere Rovers.

"It has affected his football," said Strachan. "That is the problem with playing youngsters when they are not ready. We were forced to put him in the side because of injuries.

"But he is realising that he still has a lot to learn. I watched him in the reserves and he is clearly affected. He has been playing youth football, under-19s, reserves and first team.

"It is too much and we have to protect him. He will go back into the junior ranks and continue to learn his trade. I will be having a chat with him to explain the position. I want him to be really ready next time his chance comes along."

Strachan meanwhile has a problem finding strikers.

"We have a team full of midfield players," he said.

Moroccan midfielder Moustapha Hadji will again play up front alongside Robbie Keane because strikers Noel Whelan (ankle) and John Aloisi (knee) are still injured. Defender Gary Breen has been suffering from a virus.

The Belgian winger Laurent Delorge and Norwegian midfielder Runar Normann are also on the casualty list.

Strachan is expected to field the following line up at Everton tomorrow: Hedman, Edworthy, Shaw, Konjic, M Hall, Telfer, McAllister, Palmer, Chippo, Keane, Hadji.
  

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CWN / Sport / Football / Coventry City FC / 1 Oct 99

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