O’Connor wins Jones’ approval

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SHEFFIELD Wednesday captain Rob Jones has praised midfielder James O’Connor and says the club’s depth of squad is vital to sustaining a promotion challenge.

Jones was outstanding in Saturday’s victory at Hartlepool but he said that O’Connor is a crucial figure in the Owls team: “James is a very good player. He works very hard, has great tenacity and is someone you can rely on.”

O’Connor was impressive when leading the fightback at Yeovil, he opened the scoring against Exeter at Hillsborough and then shackled Hartlepool playmaker Nolberto Solano at the weekend - a spell during which Wednesday have picked up nine points.

“He’s come into the team for the last three games and we’ve won them all,” said Jones. “James will be the first to tell you, though, that it’s a team effort.”

The full first-team squad has played a part in moving the Owls into fourth place in League One, level on points with second-placed MK Dons.

Jones said: “It is really important to have a strong squad. It is a very long season where we’re playing two or three high-intensity games a week.”

Brian Laws, who signed O’Connor for Wednesday, is 9/1 to be appointed to the vacant Nottingham Forest manager’s job.