Milan backs Reda’s power play

Sheffield Wednesday v Cardiff City......Reda Johnson
Sheffield Wednesday v Cardiff City......Reda Johnson
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Milam Mandaric believes that Reda Johnson can improve the Owls firepower when he is fully up and running.

The chairman is a big admirer of the powerful left back who has scored 13 goals in the last two seasons.

Dave Jones feels that a defender’s prime task is to defend - and in the past there were question marks from both Jones and Gary Megson about the big man’s defending.

But Jones maybe feels that Reda has improved in this respect and he has certainly been first-choice left back when he has been fit, with the manager, like the chairman, admiring his pace and his power in the air.

Mandaric has lamented: “We are missing experienced players. Reda is so strong at set-pieces and can score goals. Lewis Buxton is one of the better full-backs in the league so we need his experience and crosses.”

“We have brought in good players who just need time to gel.

“We have not been out of any of the games. Nobody has outplayed us. It is just a matter of being patient and getting back all our players. “

He admits: “Our first half was not very good against Burnley. But we should have got something from the second half.

“We had one or two penalty decisions turned down at QPR. If we had got those, the game might have been different.”

Mandaric believes that latest signings Kamil Zayatte and Atdhe Nuhiu are good ones and will get better as they settle in.

Nuhiu has to get used to the Championship, Zayette has to readjust to it, after playing in Turkey for two years.

The main aim of course is to get certain players out and bring in others.

Mandaric makes the point that there has not exactly been hectic activity countrywide in the transfer market this month.: “There is not much movement. Clubs are not spending much money.”

Jones compared himself to Leeds manager Brian McDermott in the run-up to the Yorkshire derby at Elland Road.

“I think Brian has said he needs to move players out before he can bring players in,” said Jones.

“A lot of clubs are in the same situation. Anyone who has finalised something is very lucky. I think everybody is still juggling with what they’ve got and what they need.”

Jones was interested in bringing back Connor Wickham. But that was before he signed Nuhiu, and there was always a big doubt about whether Wickham could be prised out of Sunderland on loan again.

Wickham has ended the speculation, too, by saying: “I don’t have any plans to move away. I want to break into this team, into a Premier League side. That’s my aim for this season.

“I hope the manager [Paolo Di Canio[ wants to get the best out of me.

“He wants to help me every day, he tells me where I can improve.

“It’s when a manager stops trying to help you that you need to worry.

“For me, the manager’s doing all he can.”