Sheffield Wednesday: All for one and one for all cries Jacques Maghoma

Jacques Maghoma
Jacques Maghoma
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The message so far coming out of Hillsborough has been clear: Wednesday’s impressive start to the season has been driven by a strong team spirit.

The Owls squad may be small but it is a tight-knit group with each player willing to fight for their team mates.

And when it comes to talking about the spirit in the camp, every player who has spoken up has been singing from the same hymn sheet.

Jacques Maghoma is the latest member of the squad to wax lyrical about the relationships in the camp.

But the flying winger also made it clear that while the collective spirit is strong, individual desire not to relinquish a starting berth has also been keen to the early season success.

“When you’re out on the pitch you have to fight to keep your position,” Maghoma said.

“We have a lot of quality in the squad.

“Every game I know I have to play at my top level otherwise there are other players who can come in and take your shirt.

“I have to keep working hard and not be complacent.

“The consistency we have been able to produce means that week in, week out, we have the same team, apart from injuries.

“Players keep their shirt because they are playing well.

“They have to because it isn’t just the starting XI that are doing it.

“There’s been a few games where people have come off the bench, done very well and changed the game for us.

“Against Birmingham, we didn’t start well but we changed personnel and Jeremy Helan came on and played really well.”

On those personal terms, Maghoma is delighted with the way the season has progressed so far for him.

Injury restricted the former Burton Albion man to just 22 starts during his first season at Hillsborough after switching from the Pirelli Stadium last summer.

Ever present this term, Maghoma is already more than half way to bettering that tally, and while he has been among the assists – all for a certain towering Austrian striker – he is particularly keen to improve his own goal scoring tally having netted just once.

He said: “This season has been good.

“Last season was tough for me. I came in and got the injury at the start which hindered me in my progress.

“But this season I have played every game, played a lot of minutes, and that has helped me with my form.

“Hopefully I can keep going, carry that on and score a few goals to help the team move forward.

“I’m getting a lot of assists – four now and all for Atdhe Nuhiu but the way – hopefully I can keep contributing to the team.

“I’ve let Atdhe know that he owes me some assists.”

Though he admits he found it strange not having a game to play in last Saturday morning, Maghoma says he welcomed the break the international period afforded him and his team mates.

And he insists he is ready to help make up for the point he felt was dropped at Leeds in the last game when Wednesday welcome high-flying Watford on Saturday.

“The break has been good to get a few days off and recharge the batteries, spending some time with friends and family,” Maghoma said.

“It’s always nice to have a little break but I have missed it to be fair. Waking up on a Saturday morning, I need to play.

“Now we are ready to go against Watford.

“We only ended up with a point at Leeds, conceding a sloppy late goal, but we take a point against a good side.

“We just have to take any point to keep moving forward and hopefully this Saturday we can take all three.”

“We are progressing and we’re not far off from the other teams in front of us.

“It’s just a few points gap so hopefully we can stay in and around there, keeping pushing, picking up as many points as we can.”

Back on the topic of the team spirit, the 26-year-old was keen to talk about the togetherness among the squad, and revealed it stretches beyond working hours.

He said: “We’re a tight-knit group and we do a lot of stuff together. Everyone gets on well.

“It’s outside of training too. We go for food and have a lot of banter with each other.

“Most importantly, we work hard for each other too.

“This team spirit can take us far.

“We must carry on working hard.

“That is our philosophy – to outwork teams, to run more than them which makes sure our qualities will come out on top.”