Alan Biggs At Large: Sheffield Wednesday manager and owner relationship goes way past lip service
Sheffield Wednesday’s League One upturn has been timely for many reasons and not least because it has been witnessed by the man who calls the shots.
It’s so important - vital, I believe - that owner Dejphon Chansiri sees the benefit in the apparent change of approach that followed relegation to League One.And it’s why I feel manager Darren Moore and the players bear most responsibility for what happens this season, much as Chansiri has to accept the blame for the chaotic decline before that, among many other issues.The chairman returned from his pandemic-enforced exile in Thailand to witness arguably the Owls best displays of the season, the win over MK Dons and the dominating draw with Wycombe.Having been given his head with the make up of the squad, Moore has found a way to play to its strengths.Yet it’s significant also that he has been helped by another big shift in policy behind the scenes - the loaning out of players who would otherwise be inactive.Previously the club has been reluctant to subsidise their wages for such moves. Now the benefits are apparent in the smooth transition to senior football back at Hillsborough of young defender Ciaran Brennan.Would the 21-year-old have achieved this without a toughening up spell with Notts County in the National League?As a result of that experience, Moore was able to use Brennan to plug a gaping gap caused by injuries.Equally it has done promising midfielder Alex Hunt more good than harm spending the first half of this season playing at the same level with Grimsby. More to the point, it’s raised Hunt’s value to his club with some top outfits monitoring his progress.Meanwhile, goalkeeper Cameron Dawson has been rewarded for his and the club’s willingness to take a loan opportunity at Exeter, where he has underpinned a League Two promotion bid.With that confidence-rebuilding experience in the bank, I’d suggest there’s no more than a hair’s breadth between him and the club’s currently competing keepers, Bailey Peacock-Farrell and Joe Wildsmith. Dawson might even re-emerge ahead.These are all pluses for Chansiri’s change of stance. It might not seem fair that lower clubs can use players they can’t afford but there can be a benefit to it for the lending club.Beyond that, it is paramount that Moore succeeds having been trusted in all these ways.Those who so quickly called for another change of manager were risking the undoing of a reformed approach everyone called for.The relationship between manager and owner goes way past mere lip service. It appears to be genuinely good.There is trust and, while that doesn’t exist in Chansiri’s relationship with the fan base for very understandable reasons, a rapport with the manager is an essential first step to righting the club.