Sheffield Wednesday fans column: We need to give Steve Bruce time to build his Owls team
Rome wasn’t built in a day.
It’s important we remember that when some fans are swooning hysterically about whether we’re ever going to score again.
Yes, it’s turgid at times but please look at our defence. Eight clean sheets out of 12 matches since the departure of Jos Luhukay. Our first league clean sheet of the season didn’t arrive until the November 9. That’s 17 games of conceding.
Lee Bullen, Stephen Clemence and now Steve Bruce have worked on our most immediate problem. That’s the Colosseum under construction now let’s work on our service and goal scoring opportunities.
Bruce is working out where our players’ strengths lie. If we start a new job we don’t expect to be fluent in all the processes, office politics and personalities straight away. We certainly aren’t thinking of promotion within a few weeks of getting the job. Football shouldn’t be any different.
Let’s be honest Gary Hooper, Barry Bannan and Fernando Forestieri et al probably aren’t going to be the answer to our future successes. While they still remain good players we are three years down the line from our play-off final appearance and they have started to slide down from their peak.
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While there have been flashes of greatness, the fluidity of their team and individual performances haven’t reached those Carlos Carvalhal heights. They’re a little older and in some cases more injured than they were. We need to put the past in the past and think about the future.
I’m loathed to sing praises of Jos Luhukay but he was thinking of the future. He realised that we have an ageing squad and that the likelihood of them being able to sustain a promotion push again might be limited.
Luhukay’s major problem was that he wanted to raze Rome to the ground and start again with only young blood.
Bruce still has things to discover like Bannan is better as a central midfielder and that Morgan Fox and Liam Palmer are having a purple patch and their form may drop off.
In terms of Bruce’s Rome, he still has the midfield and forward line to construct; the Trevi Fountain and the Sistene Chapel of our team. He said it could be 12 to 18 months before this happens. Give him the space he needs to build.