Sheffield Wednesday: Owls urged to shore up defence

Gary Madine is on the comeback trail.
Gary Madine is on the comeback trail.
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DAVE Jones is demanding Sheffield Wednesday cut out the “sloppy” defensive errors which have cost them in recent weeks, starting at Blackpool tomorrow, writes Dom Howson.

The Owls slipped to a 2-1 defeat at Leeds United on Saturday, a result which leaves them hovering just four points above the Championship relegation zone.

Speaking to the press corps this afternoon, Jones, the Wednesday manager, is still fuming at the two goals they team shipped in at Elland Road after going ahead through Jermaine Johnson.

Jones said: “We should have won the game. We were in a comfortable position. If you don’t defend properly, as we didn’t, then you are always giving the opposition that opportunity. They [Leeds] were very nervous. We were in charge. Whether the substitutions changed it or not, we lost our rhythm. I was just disappointed we didn’t get something from the game. It was down to us being sloppy and switching off for a 15 minute spell. Maybe one or two took their eye off the ball.

“I was so angry,” said Jones, who will serve the second of a two-match touchline ban at Blackpool tonight. “It was a game that we let go. When we decided to click back into gear, we had three or four great chances to have got something from it.

“We go to Blackpool with full commitment and desire. Players have got to keep switched on. They can’t do what we did on Saturday. It goes back to the early part of the season where we switched off at vital times. You can’t say it is naivety from us now. It is laziness. It is sloppiness and it shouldn’t happen.”

Seyi Olofinjana (knee) is a major doubt for the trip to Bloomfield Road. The combative midfielder, on loan from Hull City, did not train yesterday. Jermaine Johnson (knee), Reda Johnson (foot) and Giles Coke (foot) are also injury concerns.

Jones has confirmed Gary Madine (hamstring) is nearing a first-team return. The striker has resumed full training and could feature in Saturday’s clash with Ipswich Town.

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