‘I haven’t reinvented the wheel’, says Stevenage caretaker boss following upturn in form

Charlie Lee

Charlie Lee - Credit: Archant

Darren Sarll says he hasn’t ‘reinvented the wheel’ in his decision to play Charlie Lee as a deep lying midfielder.

Stevenage’s caretaker manager deployed the 29-year-old in that position in his first game in charge against Crawley Town last Saturday, and did so again midweek at Hartlepool and again on Saturday in the victory over Cambridge United.

Lee has been moved around the Boro side since he arrived at the club in 2014, and played in a more advanced position last season when he finished the year as the club’s top scorer.

However, Sarll believes the former Peterborough United and Gillingham midfielder’s best position is sitting just in front of the defence and he has excelled in that role in the past 10 days.

“I thought he got some harsh criticism [against Crawley] and I thought he was terrific. I thought he was very good again on Tuesday and again [against Cambridge],” Sarll said.

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“That position, I’m not reinventing the wheel here. This is something that he’s always done. He’s played 100 plus appearances in that role.

“It’s only really been at this club and the club previous where he’s played out wide left or off the front man or up top.

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“He’s got that tenacity and aggression in his game, and he can pass the ball. What more do you want for a deep lying midfielder?

“The reason why we’ve looked more solid in the last seven days is not coaching or anything unbelievable new technically on the training ground. It’s Charlie Lee, let’s make no bones about it, with a reinvigorated [Luke] Wilkinson, [Fraser] Franks, [Dean] Wells] and Jamie Jones.”

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