Lee Bowyer revealed he didn’t even tell Troy Deeney he would be captain for today’s clash with Swansea City.
And Deeney responded by scoring once and setting up Riley McGree’s winning goal as he made his presence felt in his first start for four games.
And Bowyer claimed he used the symbolism of giving Deeney the captaincy as a fillip to spark his team to their first win in eight.
“It was between him and Robbo it was a difficult decision but I know what it’s like to play for your boyhood club,” Bowyer said.
“For him to captain his boyhood club, I know that would mean a lot to him. I know he is a leader anyway, a winner, a fighter. I believe it was the right decision to make.
“I try not to make big deals out of things like that, I didn’t even tell him. Someone else would have told him. I don’t want to put more pressure on him so I have left him out a little bit.
“There’s so much pressure, I have been in this situation. You are going to play for your boyhood club, you want to show everyone how good and amazing you are.
“Then sometimes you can go the other way because you try too hard but this week in training he has been excellent, a little bit sharper. Maybe that weight off his shoulders has been lifted.
“He deserved to be captain because he is a leader, a winner all those things, and I know it might mean the world and give him and us as a team that little bit more of an edge. And it paid off.”
Indeed it did, with the game scoreless at half time Deeney converted Tahith Chong’s cross with a two-touch finish that ended the nine hour, 52 minute goal drought.
McGree scored the winner after Michal Obafemi had equalised.
“We finally scored a goal, to get three points at home against a good Swansea side. I think we deserved it, if I am ultra critical we could have scored more. We should have won by more.
“They had one real chance in the second half, you have to say their goal was outstanding. great pass, great movement from the striker and a great finish.
“That’s the quality they have in their squad and he has come off the bench.
“I hope this is a kickstart, I have said on a few occasions we haven’t been that bad but we have kept missing chances.
“Today was the same we scored two but four, five easy I think we should have scored.
“This will give the players a bit of a boost and I am really pleased for them because it’s difficult when you keep working as hard as they are working and not getting any reward for it.
“Today they have got their reward so now we have just got to get ready for next week and see what we can do there.”