Sheffield Wednesday: Cameron Dawson talks fan chants, playing for his boyhood club and Nicky Weaver
Cameron Dawson has shed light on his recent struggles during what has been a testing time for the young stopper.
Dawson has been an ever-present for Wednesday this season, ever since manager Jos Luhukay elected him as his number one goalkeeper on the first day of the season.
It was a bold move from Luhukay.
Dawson was picked ahead of both Joe Wildsmith, his fellow academy graduate who was first choice for most of last season, and the vastly-experienced Keiren Westwood.
It raised a few eyebrows among Wednesday's fanbase and Dawson wasn't helped by the leaky defence in front of him.
Prior to this season the 23-year-old had made just 11 senior appearances for his boyhood club.
He had also had brief spells out on loan at Alfreton and Wycombe.
But he was thrown straight in for the first game of the season, away at Wigan, and has certainly endured an eventful campaign so far.
Three weeks ago, in the home collapse to Norwich City, a section of Owls fans chanted the name of Westwood.
A lot of young players, at the start of their career, could have wilted under such pressure especially playing for a club with a fanbase the size of Wednesday.
But Dawson is clearly made of sterner stuff.
He retained the backing of Luhukay and that played its part in him putting in a man-of-the-match display at Bramall Lane in Wednesday's last outing.
"It is nice to have backing but nothing gets given to you in this game -you have to be strong," Dawson said, ahead of tomorrow's visit of Derby County.
"There is no hiding place.Â
"Fans pay their money and are entitled to their opinions and that's absolutely fine.Â
"It has been tough but I have got no issue with that.Â
"If they (fans) have got opinions and they want to voice them, then fair enough.Â
"It was up to me to go and put in a performance against United."Â
Dawson made a terrific save to keep out David McGoldrick's early penalty against the Blades - the second successive spot-kick that he kept out.
He also made a plethora of saves throughout as he secured a much-needed first clean sheet of the season.
Despite plenty of praise being lavished on him, Dawson elected to reserve warm words for his mentor and Wednesday's goalkeeping coach Nicky Weaver.
Weaver was quick to embrace the young 'keeper after his heroics in the derby and Dawson has spoken of his pleasure at working with Weaver, himself a former Wednesday custodian.
"He has been on this journey with me and he has backed me," Dawson.
"We work hard every day but he is the one who has backed me.Â
"When I get some stick, he probably gets some stick.Â
"It has been tough. I'm not going to sugarcoat it. It is not nice.
"But I believe in myself, I believe in what I do and I believe in the work I do with Nicky Weaver.Â
"It was about working really hard and putting a performance in and I was fortunate enough to do that so it was nice to share the moment with him."