Best victory? Most disappointing signing? - Our Sheffield Wednesday mid-season report

It’s not quite the midway point of Sheffield Wednesday’s season – but there was no game this weekend so we thought we'd break it down.

Sunday, 19th December 2021, 10:00 am
Updated Monday, 20th December 2021, 10:48 am

The Owls were meant to be taking on Accrington Stanley this weekend as they bid to climb back up into the Play-Off places in League One, however a Covid-19 outbreak at Wednesday meant that they were unable to fulfil their fixture.

Football across the country is in turmoil as cases spread around the fraternity, with games being cancelled left, right and centre across all of the divisions in the English football pyramid – despite the best efforts of many.

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The game against Accrington would have been the 23rd league game of the season for Darren Moore’s outfit and marked the halfway point for the 2021/22 campaign, but what have been the highs and lows of their season so far? We took a look.

Best win

There are a few that battle it out for this one… Beating Rotherham United 2-0 on their own turf looks incredible on the face of it having seen what they’ve done since, and sticking three past Sunderland at Hillsborough was a pretty good moment too.

But it’s hard to look past the 2-1 victory over MK Dons if you’re talking about the *best* win. It had it all.

Wednesday came from behind to win a game of football for the first time since 2019, they scored two late goals – including a stoppage time winner – and Josh Windass got an assist and a goal on his long-awaited return to action.

Worst defeat

Plymouth away. Either of them, really. Thousands of long-suffering Wednesdayites made the long trip down to Plymouth this season, once in the league and once in the FA Cup, and both times were treated to a 3-0 defeat and a lacklustre performance.

Arguably the league game was worse because winning the FA Cup is not a realistic expectation, while such a heavy defeat to the Pilgrims made sure it hit home to everybody that it wasn’t going to be an easy season.

Biggest signing of the season

You can’t really argue against Lee Gregory for this one… The Wednesday number nine has come in and made a real impact in a short space of time, directly contributing to 12 goals in the league and going clear as the club’s top scorer with eight goals to his name so far.

He’s missed just two League One games so far since his arrival – the Owls won neither of them – and he really seems to have taken to life at Hillsborough like a duck to water.

Some of the standout moments in Sheffield Wednesday's 2021/22 season so far...

Also, a special mention to Dennis Adeniran, who was absolutely flying until injury set him back.

Most disappointing signing of the season

It has to be Lewis Gibson. The young Everton man came to the club as a highly-rated young defender who it felt would really be able to make a difference to the Wednesday defence as a natural left-footer with good pedigree.

He may come back strongly in the second half of the campaign, and talks are ongoing about his future, but so far it’s been really sad that – aside from two 45 minute spells – Wednesdayites have not been able to see what he’s all about due to injury. Hopefully that can change.

Most consistent player

Not a single Wednesday player has been able to play in all 22 matches so far, but one of them has come closer than the rest.

This season Liam Palmer has played more league minutes than anybody else at the club (1890), and has hardly put a foot wrong all season. He may not be the flashiest of players, or the one that everybody notices, but he’s been solid throughout and has played wherever he’s been required for the good of the team.

Best goal

Barry Bannan’s beauty against Doncaster Rovers at Hillsborough was lovely. The way he set himself and bent it into the top corner to give Wednesday the lead… And his solo effort to open the scoring against Crewe Alexandra wasn’t bad either. Oh, and Adeniran scored a cracker against Ipswich Town.

But in terms of technique, it doesn’t come much better than Callum Paterson’s half volley against Wigan Athletic at the DW Stadium. The way he caught it and fired it top corner was delightful – and set Wednesday on the way to an important away win.

Strongest boot game

There’s a clear winner here. Palmer all the way. The Owls academy man loves his Adidas Predators and never disappoints when it comes to retro styles and colourways that come out. Whether it’s his blackout Preds, luminous blue and green ones or the new black and gold ones – he’s always on top of things.

Funniest quote

Can we look any further than Paterson’s absolute disdain at the fact that Fisayo Dele-Bashiru puts milk in first when making a bowl of cereal?

The Scottish international spent half a minute talking about it after ‘Fizz’ mentioned it on social media, and threw a nice little ‘serial killer’ pun in there as well. Very funny stuff.

Need a reminder? Here you go: “It’s wild… It’s a wild statement. If anybody puts milk in first… That’s serial killer. It’s horrific.

“How can you judge how much cereal to put in? If you put too much milk in then you’re ruined…

“Nah, that’s mad. It’s always the cereal, and then you judge the level of milk. You don’t want it overflowing, you don’t want too little, you want everything to be moist. It’s silly, madness.”