Garry Monk on Joe Wildsmith after Sheffield Wednesday milestone

Seeing Joe Wildsmith’s name in the Sheffield Wednesday starting XI against Nottingham Forest came as a surprise for many, but after hitting a big milestone, it looks like he’ll be getting more time on the field.

Tuesday, 23rd June 2020, 7:00 am

The 1-1 draw against Forest turned out to be Wildsmith’s 50th game in Wednesday colours having come through the club’s academy to make his debut back in 2015, and the 24-year-old has managed to keep 15 clean sheets along the way.

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He couldn’t have done much about Joe Lolley’s opener on Saturday, but he looked assured between the sticks after replacing Cameron Dawson from the last game before the break, dealing with a couple of crosses well and maintaining his focus despite really being tested.

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Garry Monk, who gave Wildsmith his first Championship start since April 2018, has given his reasoning behind the decision, praising both of the Owls’ young shot-stoppers.

He told the media, "I feel that we have got two really good, young goalkeepers… I think they are still in a phase where they are going to learn a lot and gain experience.

"I have said it all along that I feel there is really good, healthy competition between those two. Obviously, Cameron has done well but I just feel in this period that I want to have a good look at Joe as well.

"Joe played in the cup game against Manchester City this season and I wanted to have a closer look at him and give him a period of games and see what he can do in the games.

Joe Wildsmith made his 50th Sheffield Wednesday appearance on Saturday. (Pic Steve Ellis)

"I thought he did really well against Forest. I think we are in a really healthy position as a football club with Cammy and Joe.

"They are young keepers and are only going to get better. Real healthy competition is what we want to try and create and we have got that with those two."

Wildsmith certainly seems likely to retain his place against Bristol City this coming weekend, although changes are to be expected giving the intense schedule that lies ahead.

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Thank you, Joe.