Sheffield Wednesday’s dire run of form doesn’t look like ending after the Owls were defeated again in midweek, making it just one win in nine league outings as they slip to nine points from sixth place and the playoff picture.
The only saving grace during that time has been the FA Cup as the south Yorkshire side have advanced into fifth round to face defending champions Manchester City.
They have beaten Premier League opposition to get to this stage, winning 1-0 at Brighton and Hove Albion in the third round, but it came at a grave expense.
Adam Reach’s 65th-minute strike was the difference, although ten minutes earlier top goalscorer and Wednesday’s only true source of goals – Steven Fletcher – was stretchered off.
Naturally, when a player is carried off, fears will be ringing in the minds of just about everyone and their worst nightmare was soon confirmed.
According to the BBC, Fletcher would miss up to ten weeks whilst on the sideline, which puts him at a return of around March, so that’s another month without the 32-year-old.
He’s scored 12 times in the league this season with the next best coming from Newcastle loanee Jacob Murphy on four goals, as per WhoScored.
Monk rotated his starting lineup for that game with there being a surprise debut for academy defender Osaze Urhoghide whilst the likes of Joey Pelupessy and Kieran Lee also featured – Barry Bannan wasn’t even involved at all.
And that is what should have happened to Fletcher – left out completely as they are evidently suffering big time in his absence, and it may not swing back in their favour anytime soon.
He won’t be back until March and by then, you’d hope, January loan arrival Connor Wickham will be up to speed after a considerable lack of game time this season – he’s only played 90 minutes in the Premier League from six appearances.
This one decision could be a vital reason for why the Owls have been struggling.
And in other news, Sheffield Wednesday fans slam owner Dejphon Chansiri as poor run continues