Alex McLeish believes settled Nottingham Forest team will help search for consistency
NOTTINGHAM Forest have named an unchanged side just ONCE all season – but boss Alex McLeish says he hopes to find a settled team.
The Scot believes establishing a regular starting XI will help the Reds find the consistency they need to climb the Championship table.
Previous boss Sean O'Driscoll last named an unchanged side when he took them to newly-relegated Bolton on Friday August 24, following the draw at Huddersfield.
But O'Driscoll subsequently continued to make changes as he sought to decide on his best Forest line-up.
And McLeish has since made changes in all three of his games so far – which means the Reds have not had the same starting line-up in 25 consecutive matches.
Now McLeish admits he hopes to find a settled side quickly, in order to help Forest find the consistent form that has eluded them all season.
"Getting a settled team will help. If we can have players who are playing to a level where their performances are consistently good, then they will have the energy, because they will be confident," said McLeish, ahead of today's visit of Peterborough.
"I don't want to make too many changes every week. We did not want to stray too far away from what we had done in the Leeds and Crystal Palace games."
But McLeish says it may take time for him to find the right blend.
"I can see there are players who lack sharpness, because they have not had games," he said.
"The first two league games were an education for us. We have lost goals in situations where I did not see goals coming.
"That has to do with concentration levels and not locking things up when we have not got the ball.
"When we have the ball, we can be expansive still. But we do not have to be vulnerable. Having a settled side might help with that."
McLeish will have to make changes again when Peterborough visit the City Ground this weekend as Danny Collins is suspended – meaning that run will extend to 26. Andy Reid could be sidelined for a month with a groin injury.