Owls collapse at Carrow Road
Sheffield Wednesday fans used to sing ‘Carlos had a dream’ as the little-known manager looked to turn around the fortunes of a club that has spent too long in the doldrums. The Portuguese boss, backed by significant investment from new owner Dejphon Chansiri, steered the club to successive play-off campaigns in the past 2 seasons but a negative approach to the semi-final against Sunderland last season and a slow start to this campaign has seen his popularity slide.
The Owls went to Norwich on Saturday on the back of the most uninspiring 7-match unbeaten run, having drawn 5 of those games and had only a handful of shots on target in the whole of November. A Norwich side that had not won at home for 2 months or anywhere in their past 7 games seemed nervous and apprehensive, even more so when Jordan Rhodes stooped to head home from close range in his characteristic style that he has sadly been bereft of for much of his time at Wednesday. Leading 1-0 at the break, Wednesday rarely looked like building in this and handed the initiative back to the home side, ultimately crumbling to a 3-1 defeat against a side that had not managed to score 3 goals in a game all season.
Having previously blamed officials and injuries for poor results and form, Carvalhal implied that the defeat was a result of not being defensively solid enough, perhaps a subtle dig at fans complaining of the Owls being too defensive of late. This ignored the fact that Wednesday failed to lay a glove on their opponents who were clearly lacking in confidence once they had taken the lead and did nothing of note in attacking sense at all in the 2nd half.
Wednesday have become hard to watch due to the negative approach employed, forgivable perhaps when results are vindicating the methods but unacceptable when they are not. Since beating Leeds in an accomplished display 10 games ago the Owls have produced at least 10 complete halves of football which can be described as dire at best.
With the halfway point of the season approaching, Wednesday have played all of the bottom 10 teams below them in the Championship table and have beaten only 1 of them. Sitting 10 points off the play-off pace with tough games to come at home to Wolves and Middlesbrough is not what most were expecting and the passive, meek way in which the Owls allowed the game to get away from them at Carrow Road suggests all is not well in the Wednesday camp.