Why Sheffield Wednesday will focus on 'principles over system' under new manager Garry Monk

Sheffield Wednesday supporters clamouring to discover what style of play new manager Garry Monk will implement long-term at the club may have to wait a little longer as the 40-year-old continues to assess the strengths of his Hillsborough squad.

Tuesday, 17th September 2019, 12:10 pm
Garry Monk, sat with Lee Bullen and Neil Thompson, has outlined the importance of implementing a core set of principles in his Sheffield Wednesday squad.

The former Swansea and Leeds boss got his reign underway with an impressive 2-0 win over Yorkshire rivals Huddersfield Town on Sunday and switched from a 4-2-3-1 to a more traditional 4-4-2 in the last half hour.

Wednesday’s goals were scored either side of the change, and Monk was spotted getting a message out to his players with a written note midway through the first half.

His preferred style of play will take time to fully implement, he said, but will not deviate from a set of core principles he and his coaching staff have already begun to outline to the players.

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“We’ll have a couple of formations,” he said, “it’s important to be adaptable and unpredictable.

“But the way that I’ll do it is that our principles will be exactly the same in terms of how we defend and the attitude and our roles within that, and then how we attack.”

Quizzed about his preferred style of play at his unveiling as Wednesday manager, Monk said he would be versatile in choosing a system that brings out his squad’s strengths.

His record across four clubs pays testament to that – his preferred 4-4-2 at Birmingham contrasted his more fluid system at Leeds – he said consistency in how the players go about their business is more important than any specific formation he might plump for.

He said: “You need those formations to help you in different areas and in certain games.

“But no matter what formation we use the principles are the most important. If you’re changing formations and the principles change, that’s where you get confusion.

“We can all write down a formation now and put it out on the pitch, but the key to it is the principles you follow in it and having the same principles defensively and offensively – they have to be in both.”