‘Sulk’ turns to joy at Sheffield Wednesday as Reda returns to star

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While the gloom has been lifted at Hillsborough following back-to-back home wins, things are also looking up for Reda Johnson.

The Benin international capped a fine individual performance by helping Sheffield Wednesday record their first clean sheet in more than a month in the resounding midweek victory over Tranmere Rovers.

It was giant centre-back Rob Jones, not Johnson, who was poised to partner Danny Batth at the heart of the defence.

But the on-loan Scunthorpe player missed out on a first-team return having failed to recover from concussion which he suffered against Brentford last week.

If Jones, who had a scan as a precaution, shakes off the problem before the club’s trip to run-away leader Brigton on Saturday, it will leave manager Gary Megson with a major selection poser at the back.

“To be perfectly frank, I’d told Reda (Johnson) that I was playing Rob against Tranmere,” Megson admitted.

“I told him Monday and he wasn’t too happy, as you would expect. Then I had to go back to him half an hour later and say that Rob wasn’t right because he had done a bit of training and from expecting him to be fine, he wasn’t.

“So I had to go back to Reda, who was having a bit of a sulk, but he was okay in the end.”

Megson heaped praise on Johnson following his solid performance alongside Batth, saying: “I thought he played ever so well until he started doing his Rivelinho bit down that left-hand side!

“But he is learning. We’ve got a lot of young lads in there and Reda’s one of them.”

Richard O’Donnell, deputising in goal for the injured Nicky Weaver, said on his Twitter page he was “absolutely buzzing” after keeping his first clean sheet in a Wednesday shirt.

Victories over Colchester United and Tranmere have virtually ended any lingering fears Wednesday could be sucked into a relegation battle. Megson’s charges are nine points clear of trouble and just three points shy of breaking into the top half of League One.

Having named the same side against Colchester and Tranmere, Megson has hinted he could alter the starting line-up at Brighton.

The Owls medical team are closely monitoring the fitness of Tommy Miller. The midfielder, who bagged a first-half brace, was taken off with a quarter of the contest left with a slight hamstring niggle.

“Tommy has got a bit of soreness in his hamstring but he obviously works his socks off,” Megson said. “His first goal was a terrific goal to get from his defensive position to within the six-yard box to finish that off was great.

“It was just a case of getting Chris Sedgwick in there. He is a good lad, who wants to play and be involved.

“Tommy had a little bit of a tight hamstring so there wasn’t a lot of point in keeping him on there.

“I thought Clinton (Morrison) did well when he went on. He made Neil’s goal. We just gave him 10 minutes because Gary (Madine) was starting to tire.”