Commitment to Sheffield Wednesday future vital amid 'balanced' fan protests

Alan Biggs believes Sheffield Wednesday fans struck an 'uneasy balance' in their protests on Friday

Point made, three points taken. That uneasy balance between protest and support seemed to be perfectly struck at Hillsborough last Friday night.

Reflecting ahead of Leicester in midweek, it was a night that may have set the tone for the rest of the season. Ultimately, results shouldn’t be a swing factor either way on off-field matters at Sheffield Wednesday, even if human nature dictates the opposite is true.

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Fluctuating win or loss patterns change nothing in that regard. The club needs to be better run. Full stop. Besides, it’s not JUST about results. Form is fleeting. To become anything more permanent in the long term requires change from the top. So the 2-0 win over Birmingham, and all that surrounded it, will have been seen by many Wednesdayites as just about as good as it could be.

Certainly, it was a much more constructive than destructive experience amid a very well supported yellow-poster demonstration organised by the 1867 Group. I’ve avoided this subject here until now because it’s for fans to decide if, when and how to protest, not for column hacks to try telling them.

What you can say is their concern is unarguably valid and justifiable. And, as a matter purely of personal opinion, the group is going about it in a responsible way - with as little impact as possible on Danny Rohl and his players. Because, fundamentally, outside of the Dejphon Chansiri issue, everyone wants two things;- 1/ For Wednesday to stay in the Championship. 2/ For Rohl to stay at the club. There has been doubt about both, with the first leading to the second.

The young German manager wears his heart on his sleeve. It is not so much what he’s said as his body language that’s given rise to doubt about his comfort with the mechanics of his role.

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One thing I certainly don’t believe should apply is pressure on his job if the Owls drop. A far bigger worry in either event would be Rohl feeling he would be better off elsewhere. So what needs communicating strongly, right to the top, is the widespread agreement among supporters, from immediately following his employment, that Rohl would be backed by them whether the club stayed up or not.

Only as a long-term venture did the appointment of a first-time boss make total sense, over and above an experienced firefighter as a temporary measure. Rohl will need reassurance on this from inside and outside the club in the difficult weeks to come. We can all see the effect he can have - so his commitment is vital.

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