Passionate Xisco offers clarity on Reece James’ Sheffield Wednesday situation

Sheffield Wednesday manager Xisco reacted passionately to questions about the place some of the players yet to be used in league games hold in his thinking at current.
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The charismatic Spaniard has fielded queries over Marvin Johnson’s failure to land a place in a competitive matchday squad since his arrival at Hillsborough and this week conceded it was ‘his mistake’ to tell reporters they should ‘ask the player’ as to why he had been left out after their defeat at Hull City.

Johnson and Reece James are players who played a big part in last season’s promotion from League One and that were re-signed to the club last month, in the lay period between the departure of Darren Moore and the unveiling of Xisco.

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James played four minutes of their opener against Southampton and was left out of the squad for the trip to Hull, with Akin Famewo preferred at left-back.

Asked what James must do to regain his place as a key man in the Wednesday side Xisco replied passionately to question the relevance of queries over players not currently in the team, preferring to field queries of those put out on the pitch.

He went on to make clear to suggest James’ absence was a clear-cut selection decision and that Famewo was seen as the better option.

He said: “Always when I’m asked about players who aren’t playing, maybe you’re thinking that these players don’t give the (correct) level?

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“I don’t know why people ask me about who doesn’t play. Why not speak about the players who play and how they can improve? You ask me about players who don’t play.

“James was my decision. We’re thinking right now that Akin (Famewo) is better than James about this position.

“Why aren’t we saying Akin had good performance and played very well in this place? For me this is the situation.

“James played in the cup. Did you ask me then ‘Why not play Akin?’ The rules are that I can only put 20 on the squad and 11 on the pitch. If the next game I put James in the first 11, why do we then need to speak about Akin?

“I’m thinking about the squad and how we can win the three points because that’s all the focus is on.”