The Wednesday Week’s Dan Fudge makes his blogging debut as he looks ahead to Sunday’s Play-Off Semi Final first leg at Huddersfield…
Then comes the inevitable “yeah but look how far we’ve come since the dark days of league 1 etc”
While I agree that they very much were dark days, I think it’s safe to say that they are behind us.
I also believe that comparing Dejphon Chansiri and Sam Hutchinson with the likes of Lee Strafford and Ashley Westwood is the same as comparing apples and oranges.
But regardless of that, here we are – the playoffs once again. For some of us this is an exciting time; for others, this is a first class ticket into the cardio ward at the Northern General.
Now a lot of you will have heard the podcast and know that we are, for all intents and purposes, a “happy clapper” outlet. Having said that, you would also know that James and I have had differing opinions in recent weeks on how we should get there.
James is a firm believer in getting the points by any means necessary whereas I believe that performances are sometimes just as important. Here I’d like to explain why.
Chansiri has put his money where his mouth is and backed the team, this season alone to the tune of nearly £30M. Carlos has had the backing befitting a club of this size.
Sheffield Wednesday is two years into a new era. Long gone are the days of starting the season at Dagenham and Redbridge or signing a “crafty CM” for £50k from Bristol Rovers in Chris Lines. I truly believe that pushing for the playoffs should be a bare minimum given our resources (Aston Villa being the exception to the rule).
However there is always THAT team – that one team that saunters into the playoffs; you blink and by August they’re playing Premier league football. But they’re sitting there getting spanked on the possession stats praying they keep the result respectable.
I don’t feel that I want that for my club. Look back to the Portsmouth days with Harry Redknapp. He went for it from the off. He wouldn’t have it that they were the underdog every week, they attacked from the front and signed exciting players. The team got the backing of the fans and the culminated in European football, and even an FA Cup. They were only tripped by the demise of ITV’s “On Digital” collapse and mis-management of funds from the new chairman.
But my point remains, they played attacking free-flowing football which is what I’d like my team to do. I want to be proud of our lads and the way the play just like the Huddersfield are with Wagner and his style of play.
The Premier League is littered with clubs who “just wanted to stay in the big time”.
Me? I want us to attack at it and not become those “bus parkers” who even after sitting 11 men behind the ball, go down with a whimper. I’m looking at you Cardiff, Sunderland (2003), Derby (2007), Hull, Blackpool…. the list goes on.
So personally I’d rather go for promotion in a way that excites me (currently I can only think of the title “the non-Steve Bruce way”). I would rather instil a way of working, a philosophy if you will, of playing good football right from the start. That way we can make sure we procure the right players and staff that subscribe to that philosophy.
Don’t get me wrong, James’ way isn’t without its successes. Of course, I’d be happy with a win at Wembley playing so called anti-football. But I believe my way has more longevity and galvanises the fans. So for the next two – and potentially three games – only I’m #TeamJames (but only if we’ve played banging football before AND after).
Hopefully I’ll see you in the Green Man.