Sheffield Wednesday's subtle plot that busts 'defensive' Darren Moore myth - Alan Biggs' Column

Midway in the second half at Hillsborough last Saturday something unusual went virtually unnoticed.

By Alan Biggs
Wednesday, 2nd February 2022, 12:00 pm

Something unusual not just at this ground but at any across the top four divisions of English football.

Sheffield Wednesday left two players upfield on the halfway line while defending a corner.

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Sheffield Wednesday manager Darren Moore has been accused of being too defensively-minded

It would have been a real talking point had an attempted fast break, heading towards Josh Windass and Fisayo Dele-Bashiru, not been stifled.

A minor observation but maybe a telling one. A signal about the way Darren Moore will attack - literally - the rest of the season.

Honestly, I don’t know why more managers don’t apply this rare ploy rather than packing out their penalty area and risking a cleared ball being pinged straight back.

But the reason for mentioning is that, contrary to some claims when results are wanting, I believe Moore is far from a defensive-minded boss.

Actually he did something similar as Wednesday defended a first-half corner in the previous home game with Plymouth.

It’s an example of a desire to be on the front foot and keep on it. Moore’s 3-5-2 - a pattern I’ve said I feel he should stick to - is an attacking version of that adaptable formation.

Draws are the enemy from now until the end of the campaign. It’s now seven games since the last one and three wins from the last four.

But, of course, you need to keep the back door shut and Moore’s recruitment of Harlee Dean (sadly among yet more injuries on Tuesday) and Jordan Storey, admirably supported yet again by Dejphon Chansiri, looks a crucial intervention.

Two home wins and two clean sheets has been the reward.

With striker Tyreece John-Jules also joining, and several on the fringe leaving to help balance the books, it was a very tidy window.

But Wednesday will need every member of a strong squad to combat their wretched run of injuries.