Meetings, sleep and grit: An inside look at Danny Röhl's quest to drive Sheffield Wednesday forward

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"When I arrived I spoke about a desire to create an identity here," says Danny Röhl while shuffling forward in his seat a little with enthusiasm. "From inside and outside it is important for people to know what Wednesday is and what that identity is."

The German had by this time long since ingratiated himself with the Wednesday fanbase and those engaged in a pre-match media call earlier this month in which he went into a little detail spelling out the long-term vision he has for Sheffield Wednesday Football Club. Röhl is ambitious, clear of vision and has worked wonders in a short period of time to drag a club up from one of its lowest ebbs; winless, hopeless and reeling in the disappointment of having let the momentum of May float into the ether.

What has been clear in talks with the 34-year-old former Bayern Munich, Southampton and Germany assistant coach since he first walked through the doors at S6 is that he has ideas of how football should be played and how football clubs should facilitate that ideal. He has 'demands' and 'non-negotiables' that he and his squad follow studiously. Questions around the club's infrastructure can be parked for the future, he said; the here and now is about staying in a division that itself demands high standards and so often a certain way of doing things. Röhl has shifted Wednesday far closer to that to the point that at the very least they are competitive week on week. A culture shift is in its early stages.

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"It's about winning, being happy, but for me it is about creating a culture where we are not happy with one win, we want more and more," he told The Star. "I saw the players at Munich, big players who want to train and want to win every single training match as well. It's a little different, for them it is not just about training, it's also for them about winning every training game. If you create this in your team you build a high intensity in training because it's about being on fire to win. This is what I want to create.

"A high performance culture is also about being professional, having good sleep, eating good food, having good recovery and improving things off the pitch. This for me is a topic for the future on how we can help our players to be as prepared as best as they can, off and on the pitch. These are all small details that we can do as a club and what I will try to do as a manager. When you give players a good environment then they feel good."

Wednesday welcome Coventry City back to Hillsborough on Friday after an absence of six days - the promotion-hunting Sky Blues sneaked a 2-1 win past the Owls in the league on Saturday. The last round saw Röhl shuffle his pack and use the cup as an opportunity to rest those who needed it after a relentless midwinter schedule. It remains to be seen how he goes about this weekend.

The emergence of Bailey Cadamarteri as a teenager enjoying regular football in the Owls first team is a road less travelled in recent years. There has been matchday opportunity for Joey Phuthi, Gui Siqueira and Pierce Charles, while Sam Reed is one the senior coaches are keeping an eye on with possibilities in the coming weeks open at left-back.

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Röhl is a former youth coach who believes in the arrogance and enthusiasm of youth; he spoke at the outset of his time at S6 that there was nervousness on his part at how a squad of experienced league pros would take to a new way of doing things. He's praised those he had concerns about for climbing onboard with his methods and taking to them faster than expected. The 34-year-old's CV speaks for itself, players have mentioned, but it is in his sessions that he has them gripped in the palm of his hand.

The intricacies of what he picks up and how detailed he goes into the most seemingly mundane passages of play have captured imaginations. Each player is asked to consider their positioning regardless of how far they are from the ball, with feedback on an ideal placement set to the metre. Training pitches are twisted diagonally to encourage players to choose to pass the ball forwards. There are details touched upon that have left individuals bowled over at their hidden simplicity with both Barry Bannan and Josh Windass having described him as the best they're worked with. Players leaving grounds and catching a quick word with reporters will say the same with huge enthusiasm.

"Since I arrived here there has been not one situation where the captain or a player on the team has come to me and said they disagree with something," Röhl said. "They are really open-minded and they follow me and my style, this is fantastic. They see also that it works. You go into meetings with the captain and this is important, I have coaches that will see things in the locker room and these are all the small details we can take to make decisions for the team."

Röhl is clear on the voyage Wednesday will have to go on in the coming weeks, months and years to get to where is needs to be. For now, all focus is on staying in the second division. He has spoken about the strides he wants to take in the transfer market before the guillotine drops on the transfer window on February 1 and while the immediate focus is what it is, there is half an eye on the future where possible.

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Though he is not a 'one of the boys' style coach, his approach is personable and open, it has been suggested. His coaching team compliments his approach; Chris Powell very much is 'one of the boys', while Henrik Pedersen and Sascha Lense are both popular figures among the players. If a player steps out of line or is not meeting the demands set of him it is Pedersen and Röhl that are not backwards in showing their displeasure, with data poured over to keep a close eye on who is putting the work in and who may be slacking.

It is in regular private meetings with players that Röhl does some of his most detailed work, individuals called into his company after training and shown clips of what it is he wants them to do.

He said: "We have started in bringing young players in, in playing intense football, high pressing and more possession. These are the basics and the basics need good results to create something. We have managed to bring back some self-confidence at home and you can see now that at home we have good results with our massive fans behind us and this is what we want to do.

"To develop a club it is about first taking results and being successful, then it's a step-by-step process to create good environments. To refresh the squad, to build up the environment and to refresh and rebuild some things off the pitch. This is what I want to try. In the short-term everybody knows the goal and then in the summer we can speak about the next steps. It is clear, I want to prepare both short and long term. It's step by step but the most important thing is the next games in the league. Hopefully then we can then go to the next step to do new things."

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