It’s a strange feeling not to obsessively look at the Championship table, figuring out how many points we need to overtake certain teams or working out who needs to lose. I’ve barely even glanced at it this season.
After Tuesday night’s outstanding result against third place Derby County, there was a sense of relief looking at the table. 15th and nine points clear of relegation. Reality means shifting your focus to what you can achieve. Consolidation, isn’t that the word?
Jos Luhukay is still searching for a recipe for success. It’s difficult for him to achieve something tasty with damaged peaches and under ripened bananas. There might be the odd mouthful that resembles a healthy meal, but there will often be a sour taste to it. It’s all about having fresh produce.
Our bruised peaches are showing little sign of return. Steven Fletcher is out for the season; there are worrying rumours about Kieran Lee’s future and no timescale on the return of Barry Bannan. Forestieri is somewhere in the world. Matias is out for a minimum of three weeks. Westwood has consulted doctors in London to see if he will need an operation.
Gary Hooper and Sam Hutchinson are weeks away, we’re told, but neither will be in peak fitness and a slow, phased return is preferable.
Our under ripened bananas are the most succulent part of our season. Sean Clare’s full debut on Tuesday evening shows that the investment in the Academy is coming to fruition. It was good to hear Luhukay talking about having discussions with his agent to get him signed up.
It’s pleasing to see Jos playing with the formation and testing our capabilities. Unlike the man returning to us on Saturday.
Carlos Carvalhal has become a media darling since the Premier League discovered him. You can’t go online these days without a betting company falling over themselves to laugh at his quirky Cantona like quotes.
I hope Carlos gets a respectful reception at Hillsborough on Saturday but let’s not forget Sheffield Wednesday’s fruitfulness got mouldy on his watch.