Sheffield Wednesday slipped to their fifth successive defeat in the Championship on Wednesday night, going down 2-1 to ten-man Rotherham at Hillsborough.
Darren Moore’s side thought they had earned a point after an own goal in the last ten minutes of the 90, before Freddie Ladapo scored a heart-breaking winner for the away side deep into stoppage time.
One man who let his new manager down massively was Matt Penney.
As per Sofascore, he lost possession a whopping 22 times over the course of the game, which was the joint-most of any Owls players on the pitch, and comfortably higher than his season average of 15.2.
Not only was he sloppy with the ball at his feet, but he also looked defensively suspect, being dribbled past twice (the second-most of any Sheffield Wednesday player), and made no interceptions whatsoever – that’s a far cry from the more impressive 1.3 that he’s made per game this season.
Writing in his post-match player ratings, journalist Dom Howson said: “Given a tough time at left-back. Rotherham got plenty of joy down his side, particularly in the first period.” Stuart Rayner of The Yorkshire Post, meanwhile, simply described Penney as having an “uncomfortable night”.
The 23-year-old was a liability down Wednesday’s left-hand side, and given he’s mostly played further forward this season as a left-midfielder, it was no surprise that defensively, he seemed to struggle with Rotherham’s attackers.
It was something that was called out by a few of the club’s supporters on Twitter.
Has Penney closed down their man for the cross that leads to first goal yet ? #swfc
— Tom (@tprowl) March 4, 2021
Liam Palmer and Matt Penney should never play for us again
— Danny (@Dannysmith1867) March 3, 2021
Matt Penney is having a shocker. Get him off the pitch now.
— Niall Crossley (@NiallCrossley) March 3, 2021
Putting it out there. Matt Penney is one of the worst left backs I have ever seen in a Wednesday shirt
— Paddy (@pads1996) March 3, 2021
Matt Penney is just awful, hasn't got a clue when to close down and can't tackle #swfc
— Michael Mabbett (@Hernebayowl) March 3, 2021
All in all, it was an awful display from the full-back, and one that let his new manager down badly.