Sheffield Wednesday are stuck in a huge rut – it’s now one win and six defeats from the Owls’ last nine league outings as the prospects of returning to the top-flight for the first time in two decades appear slimmer than ever.
Their slump has seen them sink to nine points from even being in the playoff picture with 13 games to go in the season.
Garry Monk’s recent comments lambasting his players; even launching a public warning about their futures seems all too familiar.
“The transition has been happening for a long time and needs to happen and in the meantime, every player is fighting for his future. I have felt that for quite a while. It has been a bit too comfortable. I have spoken with the players about fighting for the future and they understand that and it is also about the here and now.”
Monk following a 1-1 draw with Barnsley.
Last time the Owls were a presence at the top of English football, the likes of Mark Bright, Des Walker and Paulo Di Canio were lining up for them.
Since then, the south Yorkshiremen have only enjoyed two cracks at a possible return, in back-to-back seasons under Carlos Carvalhal – the only other ‘success’ was Dave Jones steering them back to the Championship following relegation to the third tier.
Stuart Gray, Jos Luhukay, Steve Bruce and now Monk have had to fight with midtable obscurity or worse.
Back in 2016, another ex-manager in Gary Megson spoke about the culture at the club during his stint in charge – just over an exact year from February 2011 to February 2012.
Megson on players signing for Wednesday
“When you sign for Wednesday, not because the ground is great, not because the training ground is great – because it ain’t, not because it’s in a great position – because it wasn’t. You sign there because of the support.”
Megson on the type of players he needed at Sheffield Wednesday
“I needed those who could handle Wednesday, but not handle Wednesday, handle Wednesday not doing very well. I needed players who were honest, who had a right good go. They might not be the most talented, but we needed to get that there.”
Megson on players at the club
“We had players who, they gave me the impression they were doing Wednesday a favour, rather than the other way round.”
If these comments were printed today, but by Monk instead, you wouldn’t notice the difference – although, going by fans reaction, he’d say anything and get criticised.
Which is probably the wrong way to go about things, as evident above, there has been a poor attitude amongst the playing squad for quite some time – at least from 2012 onwards.
Monk needs players that can handle not doing well, an honest sort that can give fans at least the entertainment they deserve.
And that is why Megson’s comments are still ringing true today.
While in other news, Sheffield Wednesday legend Carlton Palmer slams current squad amidst poor form…