Wednesday’s ever-changing formations have been a real source of headache for me this season, making predicted line-ups near impossible to actually “predict”. Yet, as much as it’s a pain for me, it certainly adds an extra dimension to match days.
Not just in the sense that it makes constantly refreshing Twitter at 14:00pm a little bit more intense, but it also leaves the opposition completely flustered when we suddenly switch to three at the back. This seemed to have been the case against Aston Villa, who were either just plain dreadful, or tactically inept when it came to dealing with even the slightest of changes. I reckon it’s the latter.
It’s probably best we pretend we earned a clean-sheet, if it weren’t for John McGinn’s screamer we would have definitely been worthy of one. Defensively we were strong, despite many changes to the back-line; Hector made his debut, Pudil returned from injury, and our two wing-backs (Baker and Penney) are still relatively inexperienced.
We have shown that we can drop Forestieri, leave out Nuhiu (who scored 11 goals last season), and completely change the formation without it having too much of an impact on our overall performance. In fact, it’s probably safe to say that our ‘no fear’ approach to the team selection has improved more than just the performances, but also our identity.
Under Jos Luhukay we have introduced numerous youth players to the side, created an environment where ‘highest paid’ doesn’t automatically put your name on the team sheet, all while playing relatively positive football. Maybe not the fluid attacking style we saw back in 2015, but a style that suits the current crop of players without just scoring one goal and sitting back.
Faith in a manager in modern football is hard to come by, and that will always be made worse when a manager insists on frequently changing the side, however Jos has more than earnt it since joining the Owls. Being unable to spend money, while also having to contend with a side that had previously been underperforming, Luhukay has somehow turned Wednesday into a side to be respected and right now that’s all we can ask for.
Picture Credit: Sheffield Wednesday