John Swift disagrees with West Brom boss Carlos Corberan over fitness comments
Carlos Corberan insists “everyone is going to lie” about their fitness in order to play every game, but West Brom midfielder John Swift disagrees with his manager’s approach.
Albion boss Corberan made the comment in an interview with BBC Radio WM [29 September] that was focused on the use of sports science data in football.
“Every player, when you ask if they have recovered, they will tell you ‘yes’. They all want to play,” he said [0m 6s].
“When you play on Saturday, close to a full game, the next day you are fatigued but you still have adrenalin in your body.
“The most physical game is the next one. In this game, everyone is going to lie to you [about their fitness].”
But in the same interview, Swift, who was dropped for last week’s goalless draw with Millwall, provided a different view to Corberan from a player’s perspective.
“No, I don’t think you ever have to just accept it,” he said. “I think if you feel ready to play, like you can help the team, then personally there’s no data in the world that can say you’re not ready to play on Saturday.
“But the manager has his own way of doing things. If he thinks the data is high enough for me to not give my best in the game, then that’s what he thinks.
“If he makes a decision to drop a player because of the data then that’s up to him. I think the players have to just respect it, but I personally think if you play Saturday, Tuesday and have another game on the Saturday, and you’re not in the starting line-up, then you’re going to be frustrated.”
It was pretty telling that Corberan changed exactly half of his outfield XI between last week’s draws with Watford and Millwall.
Swift was a big-name absentee for the stalemate against the Lions, particularly considering he had scored in four of his previous six games.
The midfielder was brought on for the final 13 minutes but could not help his side make a breakthrough at The Hawthorns.
Corberan does not have to justify every decision he makes, but on this occasion it was clearly down to ensuring Swift – and the others omitted – remains fit.
In the view of the 28-year-old, though, he is ready to play in all three of Albion’s upcoming fixtures, which are across just six days.
If he is on the scoresheet once again against Preston North End on Saturday [30 September], then good luck leaving him out for the midweek clash against Sheffield Wednesday.