‘I watch you crumble like a very old wall…’
Never has a more apt song been played at Hillsborough at half-time. As the players left the pitch and headed down the tunnel for their team talk, Matt and Luke Goss serenaded the Wednesday players. The sentiment of the Bros ‘I owe you nothing’ song is far from the truth. I believe Dave Jones owes the fans an explanation.
In the first six matches of the season Sheffield Wednesday had drawn one, won two and lost three. In these six matches the Owls have had 19 different starting players, this doesn’t account for substitutions.
Dave Jones appears to be experimenting with the squad and dropping players who are playing well. Changing a winning side is a baffling trait but changing the team so players don’t understand what position they are playing in, is unforgivable.
With about 15 minutes to go in the Huddersfield game I asked my aunt ‘do you have any idea who’s supposed to be playing in what position?’ She just shrugged her shoulders at me. At this point winger Jermaine Johnson was playing right back and being covered by Antonio and left back Reda Johnson was playing centre forward.
The constant switching, changing, dropping and a moving IS having an effect on the team. I don’t expect new players to instantly gel and perform but I do expect a plan from the manager and for players to play in their best position.
Dropping players who are playing well whilst others are struggling to make an impact also affects the confidence of players. Chris O’Grady has proved that he is Championship standard and is joint top scorer, but has only started two matches this season.
Michael Antonio on the other has struggled to show his impressive form from last season but has started every match this season.
The reality of being a Championship team is beginning to sink in at Hillsborough. The monkey is now off our backs about the unbeaten run, but much like Huddersfield Town’s record unbeaten run last season, we are beginning to flounder.
Dave Jones said after the Huddersfield match, ‘The people who had the opportunity didn’t do it, so I might have to change it again…if people are prepared to do it, then we’ll have a chance. If not then I’ll change it, and I’ll keep changing it.’
And here in lies the problem Dave. It’s obvious that Jones doesn’t know what his best team is yet. My worry is that the new signings are no better than the players who were promoted last season but the new signings will get preferential treatment because Jones has to justify his decisions.
Dropping players constantly is not the answer. You broke it Dave, you now need to fix it.
Now if you don’t mind I’m going to gel my hair and put Grolsch bottle tops on my shoes (ask your mum).