Sheffield Wednesday: Lee Bullen speaks for the first time since Steve Bruce left for Newcastle United and 'positivity' is the key theme
Lee Bullen has praised the professionalism of the Sheffield Wednesday players after a period of upheaval which saw the Owls lose their manager just a few weeks before the season kicks off.
Steve Bruce was confirmed as the new boss at Newcastle United on Wednesday, while the team he left behind were heading away on their second tour of this pre-season.
Go-to man, Bullen has once again stepped in to ensure preparations for the new campaign continue to run smoothly and despite delays on their way to Germany the former Owls skipper says spirits remain high.
Wednesday will take on VfB Lubeck at the Stadion Lohmuhle on Friday night before facing Holstein Kiel at the Holstein Stadion on Sunday.
They set off on their trip off the back of an impressive display against Northampton Town on Tuesday and Bullen says that performance proved to him and the rest of the coaching staff that it’s a case of carry on regardless.
“The biggest thing for us has been how the players have adapted, they have been different class, second to none,” said Bullen. “They have continued working on the fundamentals that have been put in place. They have continued that on. There has been no change, no upheaval, there's been no issues and the players have bought into that and continued along that vein. The game against Northampton proved there is no negativity, its all positive. The players have been fantastic and dealt with it really well.
“Negativity could have swept in but the players handled it really well,” Bullen added from the camp in Germany. “The performance last night (at Northampton) was the question mark to see how they were doing and where their heads were at. They answered that tremendously well with a professional show against a League Two side who have half decent ambitions this season going by what their manager told me. I can't ask anything more.”
With the Championship kick-off three weeks away, Bullen revealed that now the cobwebs have been shaken off, following games against Lincoln City, Stocksbridge Park Steels and Northampton, the focus is on beginning to think about the team that will run out against Reading at the Madejski Stadium on August 3.
However, taking into account how well things have been going, Bullen believes that won’t be an easy task, whoever has to make the decision.
“It all bodes well for the next few days,” said the caretaker boss, who is undertaking that role for the third time. “(It will be a ) good couple of days training, good couple of games. It's now more about the game side of things.
“A lot of the players have got a balanced amount of minutes in. We are starting to focus and analyse a little bit on trying to nail down a potential starting XI for the Reading game. But and it's a big but, they have made it difficult for me, as it stands at the moment, to pick a starting xi from the performances we have put in. It's nigh on impossible.
“I could sit down with 1000 of our fans, trying to pick out the starting XI for the first game and we'd all have something different, from what we've seen in first three matches.”