Adam Reach has backed new Owls addition Callum McManaman to make a big impact at Hillsborough.
McManaman, who won the FA Cup with Wigan Athletic in 2013, made his Wednesday debut in Monday’s goalless draw at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
It was only the winger’s second competitive outing this term, having slipped down in the pecking order at parent club West Bromwich Albion.
McManaman demonstrated flashes of his ability on the ball but his lack of match sharpness prompted Owls chief Carlos Carvalhal to take him off eight minutes into the second half.
The 25-year-old will be aiming to kick on when Wednesday travel to Middlesbrough in the FA Cup third round on Sunday. McManaman is eligible to play for the Owls in the tie.
Reach told The Star: “Callum has only been with us a couple of days so it was tough for him to go straight in against Wolves.
“He, himself said that he was lacking a bit of fitness and game time so it was always going to be difficult for him to come into a Championship game.
“Once Callum gets that match fitness up and maybe he plays against Middlesbrough, I don’t know, he’ll be a great asset for the team.”
Securing a top-six Championship finish for the second year in a row is Wednesday’s main objective this term, but Reach insists the team will not be going to Boro just to make up the numbers.
He said: “Every game is important. In all honesty, we are all concentrating on the league because we all want to be in the Premier League.
“We’ll still go and whatever XI plays they’ll still give it their all and try to win the game because sometimes it’s a break from the league but if we win that then sometimes a little cup run can get everyone’s confidence going.
“It will be a tough game against Middlesbrough but we will go there to win.”
The Owls were jeered off by some supporters following their poor showing against Wolves. Boss Carlos Carvalhal cited tiredness for the team’s lacklustre performance and took another swipe at the New Year festive programme which saw Wednesday play twice in the space of three days.
Reach, who swapped Middlesbrough for Wednesday last August, said: “We’re all a bit tired. Wolves came here and set up quite well. They were disciplined, they will be delighted with the point whereas we’re disappointing but we didn’t lose so there are positives to take.
“We’re still in the play-offs so we are still where we want to be at least.
“We’ve got some days now to rest and get ready for Middlesbrough on Sunday.
“Maybe the break from the league, with the FA Cup on Sunday, is a bit of a relief for everyone.
“Hopefully get a good result against Middlesbrough. If not, then that’s out of the way and we can concentrate on the league again.”