SHEFFIELD Wednesday’s under-fire loan striker Jay Bothroyd is set to stay at Hillsborough during recovery from an ankle injury and manager Dave Jones hasn’t ruled out the possibility of the former England international extending his deal when it runs out in January.
Bothroyd has been something of a lighting rod for Wednesday fans disgruntled with the team’s performance since a promising start to life back in the Championship.
The Queens Park Rangers player joined the Owls just before transfer deadline day the end of August, which coincided with a run of results that has seen the club slump to second bottom in the league.
The 30-year-old has been criticised by some Wednesdayites for his languid style that can be taken for a lack of effort - a charge that Jones, ahead of today’s home match with struggling Bristol City, vehemently denied any professional footballer would do.
Jones said the club is still waiting to find out the extent of Bothroyd’s ankle injury sustained when he was brought down for a penalty against Watford last week.
He said the injury won’t affect how long Bothroyd remains at Wednesday: “Jay was in a pot. He’s had it scanned and we’re just waiting on the scan results.
“It doesn’t affect it (when he returns to QPR) at all. He’s here until January 2. He can’t play for them. If we sent him back now he can’t play for them until his loan is up.
“He’s our player. Anyone who is here is our player and we’ll deal with that (the injury) accordingly. We’ll make that decision (of whether to keep him) when it’s ready to make. At the moment there’s lots of different things we’re looking at; checking on players, players we’ll move out, players we’ll bring in. It’s always an ongoing thing.”
“The one thing you have to do is keep fully focused and keep your own mind set right because in football things happen that you have no control over.”
Jones also issued a rallying cry to the fans to support the team through thick and thin. He said: “If you’re coming let’s all stick together. No one means to make a mistake. People come out and say ‘oh, he’s not trying’.
“Why would you want to go out in front of 20,000 people and not try and be abused. I’ve never understood that one.
“Why would he not want to try? He may be nervous, there may be a bit of fear there. Everybody tries, but when things aren’t happening players can go a bit safe. That’s a fear factor that creeps in. And that’s what we’re trying to stop.”