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Charlton Athletic boss Lee Bowyer set to rotate frontline options

Lee Bowyer reckons he has the striker options in his Charlton Athletic ranks – and has made it clear he will rotate his frontmen.

The Addicks handed debuts to Paul Smyth and Omar Bogle in Saturday’s 1-0 win over Wigan.

QPR loanee Smyth started the contest with Bogle, a permanent addition after being released by Cardiff, replacing Chuks Aneke in the second half.

Bowyer said: “There were a lot of positives. The thing I did like is our two strikers we took off, we put two on. It was like for like. Chuks caused them problems at the back and Omar came on and just carried that on. Then you had little Smythy and Conor [Washington], which was like for like as well – their energy and movement caused them problems as well.”

Asked if Aneke, who has been troubled by injuries since arriving from Milton Keynes, was fit enough to play a full 90 minutes, Bowyer replied: “I don’t think so. If I was to do that then we’re going into the red – it becomes a risk.

“It’s like with Jonny [Williams], if they start Saturday and then start Tuesday there is a risk, you’re going to risk them getting injured. It’s one of the things we’ve learned with those type of players. You have to weigh up the pros and cons.

Smyth was bright on his debut. Bowyer had wanted the Irishman last season but he ended up going on loan to Wycombe instead.

“We tried to get him in the last two or three windows,” said the Addicks boss. “QPR were keeping hold of him and then last minute he went somewhere else, because we had to move on.

“We’ve finally got him over the line and you could see at the weekend the quality he’s going to bring us. He’s going to cause problems to defences – he’ll score and make goals.

“He was a good one to get over the line. He’s the type of striker I like to have – a big one and a little one who is a bit quicker and sharper in and around the box. We’ve got Conor but he will get injured at some stage. Now we have got like-for-like strikers – it’s something I did a couple of years ago when I first took over, I did rotate the strikers quite a bit.

“Now I’ve got that option. It’s finding who works best with who. Some players only came to us Friday and a couple more a couple of days before that.

“They’ll gel together and we’ll find out who works best with who.”

Another debutant was Andrew Shinnie. The attacking midfielder signed on loan from Luton Town on Friday morning.

“Shinnie just came up late,” said Bowyer. “He came up from nowhere. To get someone of his experience – he’s got experience of getting out of this division as well. He’s a very good player in the final third. He’s a good passer and has got good quality.”


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