Sheffield Wednesday goalkeeper Cameron Dawson believes new boy Alessio Da Cruz can help get play-off push back on track
The addition of Dutch loan signing Alessio Da Cruz can give Sheffield Wednesday a new lease of life in their stuttering promotion push, according to Owls goalkeeper Cameron Dawson.
The Parma-owned 23-year-old, who made a positive impact in his 23-minute cameo debut against Millwall last weekend, is one of three new boys available for Saturday’s vital South Yorkshire derby clash at struggling Barnsley.
Together with Connor Wickham and Josh Windass, his arrival has given Garry Monk a new outlook going forward and represents a successful end to a transfer window throughout which the Owls boss maintained adding options up top was a priority.
And it was alongside Fernando Forestieri, returning from a knee injury that had kept him out for two months, that Da Cruz shifted Wednesday into their most dangerous-looking gear in Saturday’s goalless stalemate, producing a handful of flicks and passes that got supporters off their seat.
Dawson, who has settled himself as Monk’s number one and recorded his ninth clean sheet in all competitions this season, saw enough from the Dutchman to convince him he has what it takes to make a difference.
“It’s nice to have a new face in the door,” Dawson said. “He will bring something a bit different up the top end of the pitch.
“He looks a good player. Ideally, when it gets to this time of the season, every club would like to a bit of business, if they can strengthen. That’s no different to us.”
The draw saw Wednesday lose more ground on the play-off spots and drop to 11th place in the Championship – seven points from sixth-placed Britol City.
They will hope to improve upon a run of one win in seven league against a relegation-threatened Barnsley.
“It’s crazy really, we have had such a poor run and we are still only a few points off [the top six],” Dawson said.
“But I think it’s important, at this time, we don’t look at that. It’s important to get back to what we know and concentrate on ourselves, bringing that fight, commitment and energy. I am sure the results will then follow.”