Dom Howson’s Sheffield Wednesday column: The signs are the Owls have learned from past mistakes

Jos Luhukay
Jos Luhukay

The beauty of the international break is it is a good time to take stock.   

For the Owls, six Championship matches have yielded three wins and one draw. 

Would most Wednesdayites have taken 10 points and 11th spot at this stage of the campaign? Given the club are notorious slow starters, I reckon the vast majority of the fan-base will be reasonably happy.

There would have been no excuses had Wednesday come out of the blocks slowly. The club opted to stay in England and not go abroad on a pre-season training camp over the summer, giving manager Jos Luhukay more time to work with his players on the training ground and get them physically prepared for a long, arduous campaign. 

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And Luhukay did not have to bed in any new recruits because of their transfer embargo.

You cannot escape the fact either that the fixture list handed them a kind, favourable start. Wigan are new to the league, Hull City, Ipswich Town and Reading have not invested heavily in bolstering their squads and Millwall, last season's surprise package, don't have a great recent record at Hillsborough.

Brentford away always looked the toughest assignment and Wednesday were soundly beaten. Two nil massively flattered Luhukay's charges. The Bees completely outclassed the Owls from the moment Neal Maupay stroked in a 20th minute penalty.

Things did not look too clever after the Bees horror-show but Wednesday's squad stuck together and overcame adversity. Recording three straight league wins is something not to be sniffed at in the second-tier.

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Jos Luhukay

Jos Luhukay

I keep hearing the phrase 'Wednesday haven't played anyone good yet.' Maybe. Maybe not. But the Owls can’t control who they play or when. They can only beat what is put out in front of them.

It is early days but I do think Hull, Ipswich and Reading look three of the weakest teams in the league and will be scrapping for survival come May. However, those are the sort of teams who the Owls have slipped up against in recent years.

Wednesday appear to have learned from past mistakes, garnering seven points from the three clashes. It really should have been nine out of nine but they spurned a number of glorious opportunities in the second half versus Hull.

The encouraging thing from an Owls point of view is they have yet to reach top form. Luhukay's team have only shown glimpses of their true potential. You would like to think there is still a lot more to come from them over the coming weeks and months.

There are tough challenges coming up, including Stoke City, Nottingham Forest, Aston Villa and Leeds United. Losing Fernando Forestieri for three matches is a blow but Wednesday shouldn’t fear a tricky run of matches.

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