If anybody knows about the qualities Stephen McPhail will bring to Sheffield Wednesday then it’s Dave Jones.
He signed the midfielder for Cardiff from Barnsley back in 2006 and made him an integral part of his Cardiff side which included the team’s run to the 2008 FA Cup Final at Wembley.
He will know, too, of the personal battle McPhail has bravely fought against the illness which struck him in 2009 when he was diagnosed with a form of cancer which affected his lymphatic system. Resurrecting his football career now after spending last season waiting and hoping to be involved in Cardiff’s promotion push, will rather pale into insignificance by comparison.
McPhail, 33, was released by Cardiff after their promotion to the Premier League in May but insisted then he had at least a couple more years left in football.
Jones made contact and knew what he would be getting and McPhail has been training with the Owls for a while.
He arrives on a short-term deal that will take him into January and the situation will obviously be re-assessed then.
He began his career at Leeds as a teenager some 16 years ago and joined Banrsley in 2004, helping them gain promotion from League One via the Play-offs.
Jones took McPhail, capped ten times by the Republic of Ireland, to Cardiff and it was a success. Seeking extra creativity now, Jones will hope his particular midfield skills, craft and passing, work for Wednesday.
He teams up with former Cardiff teammate Roger Johnson who also joined Wednesday on loan this week.
Ahead of today’s trip to Birmingham, Jones noted the Owls had just had four draws so hadn’t actually lost.
“We have a good base, we haven’t lost all the games. We just need to make sure we turn draws into wins.” ”