Sheffield Wednesday: Injuries severely test Owls’ strength in depth

Carlos Carvalhal, left, with Kieran Lee
Carlos Carvalhal, left, with Kieran Lee
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Wednesday’s squad depth has been severely tested this month.

Boss Carlos Carvalhal has had fewer options at his disposal because of a string of injuries.

Barry Bannan, Will Buckley, Gary Hooper, Marco Matias and Urby Emanuelson were all unavailable for selection against Rotherham United. Right-back Jack Hunt was also not involved due to illness and striker Fernando Forestieri served the final match of his three-game suspension.

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It is just as well the Owls carry a big squad as midfielders Almen Abdi and Kieran Lee were forced off versus the Millers due to shoulder and hip problems respectively.

“These kind of things are not easy to manage,” acknowledged Carvalhal. “We are missing half a team but we trust in all the players.

“We have players coming back to help make us stronger. We will continue to get better.”

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Wednesday are optimistic things will have improved on the injury front when they resume their Championship campaign at Newcastle United next Monday.

Carvalhal is confident Bannan will be fit to line-up against the Magpies. The midfield playmaker was rested last weekend due a foot problem.

“Barry played against Barnsley in a very hard situation,” he said. “He had a pain but we took a risk and played him. I’m very happy with his attitude as he tried to help the team.

“Barry was at the limit with his pain so he was not in the squad against Rotherham but we expect him to be back in training this week.”

The Owls also have high hopes that Lee will recover from his knock in time to face the leaders.

“Kieran is another player who is playing a lot of games with some difficulties,” said Carvalhal. “But like Barry, Kieran goes to the limit.

“It is why sometimes they must stop and we have to rest them.”

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