Darren Moore shoots warning to Sheffield Wednesday fans over recovery of Josh Windass and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing amid Lee Gregory query

Sheffield Wednesday supporters shouldn’t expect the likes of Josh Windass and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing to be thrown straight into the cut and thrust of their League One promotion push when they return from injury.

Wednesday, 16th March 2022, 12:00 pm

That’s according to Owls boss Darren Moore, who speaking after his side were held to a 1-1 draw with Accrington Stanley on Tuesday evening explained that the decision not to name Lee Gregory in the starting line-up was to continue his recovery from a long spell out.

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Gregory was introduced with half an hour to go in the clash having played a starring role in Saturday’s 6-0 win over Cambridge.

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Sheffield Wednesday striker Lee Gregory will continue to be carefully managed on his comeback from injury.

And Moore’s message seemed to be that patience is required.

“What we’ve got to remember is that a lot of our players are coming back after a long, long time out,” he told The Star when asked when it will be that Gregory is considered ready to play back-to-back matches.

“The ones that are coming back, what’s difficult when the games are coming as they are is giving them 90 minutes because what you end up doing is straining.

“In terms of their muscles kicking, running, striking every day, they’re not at the power they need to be at.

“When people are coming back, you still have to get them fit and get them towards that match fitness. Even though they’re back and everybody thinks they’re back match fit, it’s totally different.

“What you have to do is manage the players. I want them to come back and stay back.

“The longer they’re out there and the longer they train, it means they’re coming back towards 90 minutes.”

Dominic Iorfa was able to make his first start in 143 days in the Accrington draw and while others are close to a return, Moore warned that patience will be executed when it comes to their pitch time.

He said: “What people have seen with Lee Gregory being our number nine and what he offers, you can get caught up with getting him playing

“With the more time he’s getting, he’s getting closer to 90 minutes.

“The same will be done with Mendez-Laing when he comes back, Josh Windass when he comes back and even Harlee Dean.

“It’s different for defenders because of the level of ground they cover compared with strikers.”