Gloucester City boss Dave Mehew is set to stick with his experienced players for the FA Cup visit of Leyton Orient, despite being less than impressed by their recent performances.
Mehew saw his side fall to a ninth defeat of the season on Sunday as Maidenhead United won 1-0 at Whaddon Road in the FA Trophy. He has called the first round tie against Orient as a final chance for some of his under-performing players to show their abilities, as after that game the axe will begin to fall.
``We didn't do enough to win on Sunday. We kept going in terms of our effort but the quality wasn't there and that is now becoming a bit of a worry,'' Mehew told The Citizen. ``I have told them they will get the cup game and after that I will have to start making some tough decisions. If that means some experienced players have to sit out of the side for a couple of games so they come back 10% hungrier, then that's fair enough.''
Mehew has tinkered with his formation in recent weeks as 4-4-2 has become 3-5-2 and then 4-2-3-1 for Sunday's defeat. It remains to be seen how the Tigers will line up on Wednesday evening.
Should Mehew wish to make changes to his starting XI he is able to call on Adam Mann, Mitch Harding and Jordan Tillson, who all came off the bench against Maidenhead, while Sam Rawlings and player-coach Neil Mustoe are other options.
City, playing in the first round for the first time in 23 years, will travel to Alfreton in the second round if they can manage to cause an upset against the npower League One side.
Leyton Orient manager Russell Slade has to decide whether to start with Kevin Lisbie again or keep him back as a substitute.
Striker Lisbie marked his return from missing a month due to a hamstring injury with a brace of goals on Saturday to help Orient to a 2-1 victory over Shrewsbury.
But Slade may feel his team has enough firepower to see off non-league Gloucester and could protect his number nine following his lengthy lay-off, with the O's boss admitting he was close to taking Lisbie off against the Shrews before he grabbed a late winner.
``He holds the ball up and he has a cleverness about him. He allows us to push up the field, he allows us to build up play,'' he told the club's official website.
``He's a big part of that and you could see it on Saturday. He also got a bit of a knock on both his leg and his head early on.
``We were having to monitor him and there was a temptation to take him off late on, but I'm glad I decided to keep him on.''