DAVE Jones, the Sheffield Wednesday manager, is pleading for patience as he tries to reverse the club’s slide back into League One.
Jones, who led the Owls out of the third tier of English football into the Championship with a stunning run of results last season after taking over from Gary Megson, says Wednesday need stability to re-establish the club as a force in the game.
However, after seven defeats in a row the patience of chairman Milan Mandaric must be wearing thin, even though he pledged at a club sponsors dinner this week that Wednesday wouldn’t be relegated.
Jones said that the long-term problems of the Owls, which saw them fall from being an established Premier League club to yo-yoing between League One and the Championship, will take time to put right.
And he insists he is the man to do it. He said: “The next fella that comes in would have the same problem. We’re trying to work it through.
“I’m a big boy and I understand the world of football and that everybody thinks change is for the best and that it’s a magic formula.
“Everybody chases the pot of gold. If it happens it happens. That decision won’t be mine.
“That’s the way of football. Personally I think it would be harsh.
“I don’t care if it’s 10, 12 defeats in a row, you have to look at everything else that’s happening.”
The Wednesday players, manager and chairman paid their Christmas visit to the Children’s Hospital yesterday.
Spirits within the club remain high despite just two victories in their last 18 league
matches. Jones said his past experience is standing him in good stead for this testing time at Hillsborough.
He said: “I haven’t become a bad manager overnight. It’s as if someone has flipped me upside down because I’m normally at the top, not the bottom.
“I have walked into clubs like this before. I went to Stockport, Wolves, Cardiff when they were in this situation, and I turned it around.
“Sometimes it takes a bit longer than you think.
“This club has had 12 managers in 15 years, so it tells you that is not the answer.
“Somewhere along the line you have to give someone time to put it right.
“There’s a lot of hurt going on around here and you’ve got to change a lot of things.”