Sheffield Wednesday: Hooper backed to get on goal hunt

Gary Hooper
Gary Hooper
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It is fair to say Sheffield Wednesday have yet to see the best of on loan striker Gary Hooper.

Played into some decent positions after coming off the bench against Huddersfield Town on Saturday, the 27-year-old failed to show the killer instinct which made him a highly sought after forward for the likes of Celtic and Norwich City in the past.

An ankle injury suffered prior to his loan switch to the Owls last month has certainly played its part, with Hooper still not 100 per cent fit.

As the hunt for his first Wednesday goal continues, Hooper has received the backing of full back Jack Hunt.

“Gaz has been doing it for years and scoring goals at the highest level,” Hunt told the Star.

“He helped Norwich get promoted last season so he is a massive addition to the squad.

“I think it’s unfair to judge him on the Charlton game where the whole team was poor or 20 minutes against Huddersfield.

“I’m sure in the time he is here that he will give the fans a lot to cheer about.”

Hooper netted 12 goals in 34 appearances for Norwich as they won promotion from the Championship last season but found himself on the fringes of the Canaries’ Premier League squad this term.

The Essex-born forward has a Championship scoring record of slightly better than a goal every three games, built over time with Southend United, Scunthorpe United, Norwich and now Wednesday.

And Hunt says his statistics-backed reputation as a hot shot forward means Hooper’s presence in the Owls side is a huge boost to the collective confidence.

He said: “He gives confidence for myself.

“I like to get forward and with the other wide players, you know nine times out of ten that when you give an opportunity that he is at least going to hit the target or score, so that’s a big boost for the team.

“It’s one thing we definitely needed.

“You need to take your chances in this league so Gaz will be brilliant for us.

“He was injured before he joined us so it does take a bit of time to build up your match fitness and get used to the other players.”