Sheffield Wednesday: The post-Brentford day Owls boss Luhukay confronted his players and said 'not acceptable'
A straight-talking team meeting where Jos Luhukay laid down the law to his under-performing players kick-started Sheffield Wednesday season, it has emerged.
The angry manager gathered his squad together two days after a miserable 2-0 defeat at Brentford and told them in no uncertain terms that their standards were not acceptable.
The Owls had taken just one point from their opening three Championship games but have won both matches following their boss's blast to climb out of the relegation zone into 14th place.
Luhukay, who is normally quite reserved, admitted he showed his team a side to his character they'd not seen before when he addressed them the day before last Wednesday's 2-1 triumph over Millwall.
Right-back Ash Baker, who played in the Griffin Park loss, said: "A couple of strong words from the gaffer helped change things.
"The manager gave us the talk we needed. We did need a kick. What he said, worked. (Does he get angry?) All I will say is he does what he needs to do."
Luhukay, whose side are at home to Wolves in the Carabao Cup tomorrow, has been rewarded with maximum points against the Lions and Ipswich Town since proving he won't select players on reputation only.
He dropped established men like Fernando Forestieri and Sam Hutchinson to the bench and promoted academy prospects to his first team.
"I was not happy with the game at Brentford and I told the players," he said. "It was, for me, not acceptable. In football, you can lose a game. But the way you lose a game can make you not happy.Â
"It was hard how I go at the team the day before the Millwall game, but I do it not for me. I will have success with Sheffield Wednesday and I must make decisions when my players don't do 100 per cent what we must do.Â
"You must always work hard. If you don't have that, you cannot be winning games. Last Wednesday, we play a every good game. Last Saturday, we were not at the same level but we work the same as Wednesday.Â
"You can win when you work to the last minute for the result. That is what I expect and ask from the players. Who does that, can play. Who does not, sits outside."
Luhukay, who is expected to make changes to his starting 11 tonight with Saturday's league trip to Reading in mind, has been delighted by the reaction of his group to their dressing-down.
"Last Tuesday was a very hard analysis, with my feelings as a coach," he said. "On Wednesday, I see the team doing the things we have spoken about the day before. They give the answer after Brentford."