Giles Coke is the unsung hero of Sheffield Wednesday’s midfield engine room, according to Owls boss Stuart Gray.
The 28-year-old replaced the injured Sam Hutchinson in Saturday’s victory at Middlesbrough and delivered a superb performance as the Owls ran out 3-2 winners.
Gray told The Star: “I thought Giles was excellent. It was the complete midfield performance.
“Giles is one of those unsung heroes. I can see what he does. He was fantastic. He just didn’t get the goal he deserved.”
Coke almost capped a fine individual display by getting on the score-sheet in the 75th minute but his header from Stevie May’s cross rebounded off the right hand upright as Boro managed to keep the Owls at bay. The Londoner hit a spectacular goal in their opening day triumph at Brighton and Hove Albion and Gray has challenged him to contribute more goals.
“Giles needs to chip in with goals,” insisted Gray. “He’s got to be scoring.
“He scored a wonderful goal at Brighton. I know Giles has got the ability to be chipping in with five, six, maybe 10 goals this season.
“He’s got licence to break into the box. He showed his ability on the ball at Middlesbrough. He can play right or left footed and pick out a pass. He also puts a shift in for the team.”
Hutchinson failed a fitness test on the back injury he suffered against Millwall prior to the Owls’ fixture with Middlesbrough. Gray may resist the temptation to restore him to the starting line-up versus Burnley tonight as Wednesday welcome Championship leaders Nottingham Forest to Hillsborough on Saturday.
However, Gray could hand a start to Chris Kirkland in goal. The former England international featured in their first round win over Notts County.
Midfielder Kieran Lee (groin) will play no part at Turf Moor and remains a big doubt ahead of their tussle with Forest.