Owls chief ‘very happy’ to stay put

Owls boss Carlos Carvalhal insists he remains “very happy” at Hillsborough despite reports linking him with the Swansea City job.

By Dom Howson
Thursday, 24th December 2015, 5:00 am
Carlos Carvalhal
Carlos Carvalhal

Swans chairman Huw Jenkins is reportedly interested in speaking to Carvalhal as he seeks a replacement for Garry Monk, who was sacked earlier this month.

Bookmakers reduced Carvalhal’s odds markedly on Tuesday night and the Portuguese is now rated an 8/1 shot to be the next Swans boss.

Carvalhal has impressed in his first season in English football, steering Wednesday to within a point of the Championship’s play-off positions and the quarter-finals of the Capital One Cup. The 50-year-old, a surprise choice to succeed Stuart Gray last June, has won over his critics with an enterprising, attacking brand of football.

While Carvalhal refused to rule himself out of the running, he stressed the link is just based on “rumours”, saying he was unaware of any approach from the Premier League club after speaking to his agent yesterday morning.

When pressed on whether he was going to stay at Wednesday, Carvalhal said: “I don’t need to confirm anything because you’re talking about rumours.

“Today you have a rumour and tomorrow you will come here again to ask about another rumour.

“These are rumours. I can’t talk about rumours. I will never do that. Rumours are like fantasy. I must talk about the reality and my reality is I am very happy what I am doing.”

Carvalhal, formerly of Sporting Lisbon and Besiktas, takes it as a compliment that he is being linked with other jobs.

“Probably, because we are playing good football, positive football and scoring goals, this kind of news can happen,” he said.

“I can say nothing more than this because as you tell me, it’s rumours. Rumours are rumours.

“I’m a professional. Professionals don’t talk about rumours. I’m preparing a team to play on Saturday, the same way that I prepared last week, with enthusiasm.

“I am trying to help Sheffield Wednesday play better and better. We have a very important game on Saturday against Birmingham.

“It is my work and I want to do better all the time.”

The Owls chief also denied reports linking Wednesday with an audacious move for ex-Arsenal and Manchester City striker Emmanuel Adebayor. The Togo international is currently without a club after leaving Tottenham Hotspurs in September.

“It is a rumour,” he said. “I won’t comment on rumours today or tomorrow.

“I have never heard about the possibility of Adebayor coming here,” he added. “He is a fantastic player but we have never talked about this.”

Carvalhal is devoting all his time and energy to the Owls’ busy festive schedule which will see them play twice in three days. After entertaining Birmingham on Boxing Day, Wednesday face a daunting trip to table-topping Middlesbrough next Monday.

Carvalhal, a big believer in squad rotation, is likely to shuffle his pack over the holiday season. Midfielders Jeremy Helan, Lewis McGugan and Jose Semedo could all feature versus a Blues team who sit in eighth position, level on points with Wednesday.

“We will need all the players ready,” he said. “We have some injuries at the moment but we believe we can do very good in both games.

“We will check on the players’ condition after Saturday and then make decisions but Birmingham is the most important game.”