Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Flight of the Owls V

Right, I’ve had my little break from Blogger during the Summer as normal (despite the Euro Championships being on...but to be fair I’m glad I didn’t write about that, it was a dreadfully boring tournament) and now I’m back to continue talking about the situation at Sheffield Wednesday.

My last Flight of the Owls post left off with the Wednesday about to go into the playoff semifinals against Brighton after an impressive season that had seen us finish 6th. I think I must have been too deliriously pissed to write a post after we beat them 2-0 at home before seeing out a 1-1 draw away to guide us to a play off final game against Hull City.

Despite the excitement of both semifinal legs, the playoff final was as boring a game of football as you’re ever likely to see. Due to a family wedding I had to watch it on a train using my mobile data but I’ll tell you this, if it wasn’t Wednesday playing I wouldn’t have bothered. Both teams looked too scared to try anything exciting in fear of making a mistake. The only piece of skill in the game came from Diame’s right boot to settle the game in the 72nd minute.
~ Side note: I’d like to add how proud I am of the fans that did make the trip down to Wembley. From what I heard they were incredible as usual and showed what a sleeping giant we have been for the last 15 years ~

Now that brings last season to a close, what’s been happening this season? Well I’d like to start with a message to Carlos Carvalhal. Carlos...where do you get off? Signing good players and having them play attractive football? Who do you think you are? By now you may have guessed I’m speaking ironically and have nothing but good things to say about what you do. Carlos, do not change a thing.

I actually can not believe that fans are already calling for our bosses head. He has been unbelievable since arriving at Wednesday, he has a strong philosophy, has the players on his side, he loves the club...but with only 3 wins in our opening 8 games some “fans” are wanting him out like a dick for Harambe.

Apparently 3 wins, 3 losses and 2 draws isn’t a good enough start to a season despite The Owls being 2 points worse off at this time last season. I’d personally be happy with another season in the playoffs and with the amount of teams that should be challenging for a play off place this season, those 2 points could make a hell of a difference.

Next I’d like to discuss the players brought in by Carvalhal, the first one being Steven Fletcher. I was sceptical of the Scot coming in, I thought the aerial threat he would inevitably bring would be helpful but who would you drop for him as both Fessi and Hooper scored a good amount of goals last term. Thankfully though he has shut me up, bagging 2 goals in 7 appearances so far and looking more than worth his £0 transfer fee.

The next big signings were Watford double Daniel Pudil and Almen Abdi. Pudil was a good signing, rumours being we paid around £1.5 million for him which for me is hefty for a left back at this level but thankfully we’re in a position now where we don’t have to penny pinch.

Abdi on the other hand was a bit of a mystery for me. I’d heard the name for Watford but never actually seen the Swiss international play. From what I’ve seen of him in a Wednesday shirt though, he seems to be a welcome addition with a nice range of passing, a strong workrate and, if his Watford days are anything to go by, he has the potential to score quite a few goals from midfield which is never a bad thing.

David Jones was a transfer that confused me a little. I’ve heard one or two fans compare him to former Wednesday legend John Sheridan but since I was born in 1995 I didn’t really get to see a lot of his style of play (although I can watch his goal against Man United in the ‘91 League Cup Final all day every day). I personally thought we had enough quality in central midfield but I suppose one more quality addition wont hurt, hopefully he can show off his ability...once he’s served his suspension after his debut red card.

After last season I felt we were crying out for a winger. A winger who could cause an impact in the same way Ben Marshall and Antonio did when we were in League One. Carvalhal signed Will Buckley on a season long loan and Adam Reach for £5 million.

Buckley was an intelligent bit of business in my opinion. Can bring something to teams at this level, should be looking to impress here if he wants to get back to playing week in week out and if he doesn’t perform then there’s no skin off our nose cause he’ll be back at Sunderland next year. At 26 and in his prime we should hopefully be seeing some impressive stuff from this lad which would be a stark contrast from his days at Sunderland and Leeds.

Adam Reach’s transfer is a bit of a different issue though. He’s 23 with plenty of years to improve, has impressed in multiple loan moves across England and lastly is now Wednesday’s record transfer player. Now these days with Paul Pogba going for £89 million and the likes of Christian Benteke go for £27 million, transfer fees mean fuck all, so £5 million isn’t really a large amount of money to let go.

But considering Reach has just joined a club which has spent a combined 46p in transfers over the last 15 years I have to say £5 million seems like a lot of money. I don’t think the price tag is going to be loomed over this lads head but I do think they’ll be an expectancy of him to perform over the next few seasons.

The squad we have is more than capable of challenging for a playoff place and if the side clicks like all Wednesday fans are hoping they will, then we could be seeing a possible automatic promotion push...I can dream. I know it's early days but I can’t help feeling optimistic each season. One of the main reason being our reserve side now is stronger than most of the starting 11’s we’ve had in recent years.

Now we’re more or less up to date with this season so far. Hopefully The Mighty Owls can get 3 points vs Forest this weekend and shut up those “supporters” who seem to confuse anger with passion (yes I’m looking at all the people who have slated Westwood. One mistake and suddenly he’s not fit to wear the shirt? Get a grip). I suppose I’ll continue our flight when we’ve gone 10 games without a win and I’m stood in Hillsborough car park with my shoes off. But until then, I’m just gonna enjoy it.

~ Anyone who enjoyed this please follow me on Twitter @ThePenaltyKing1 or like me on Facebook at ~

Cheers for reading.

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