Owls appoint Irvine

Last updated : 08 January 2010 By Chris Morris

Sheffield Wednesday has brought their 3-week spell under caretaker leadership to end by appointing Alan Irvine as manager. The former Preston North End boss has agreed a three-and a half-year deal at Hillsborough and his first match in charge will be the South Yorkshire derby at Barnsley next Saturday.

Since the departure of Brian Laws on December 13th the Owls have been led by Sean McAuley but performances have shown little sign of improvement. Aside from an encouraging display in the Boxing Day draw against Newcastle the Owls have been disappointing having lost in the league at home to Swansea and last weekend they were dumped out of the F.A. Cup at the first attempt by Crystal Palace.

Irvine faces the unenviable task of turning around the team’s current fortunes and steering them away from the Championship relegation zone. Wednesday have not won in their last 12 attempts and have only found the net 7 times in those matches. They currently stand next to bottom in the table, 4 points behind 4th from bottom Scunthorpe.

In a statement released on the Owls official website, www.swfc.co.uk   Irvine said “I am delighted to take up the position as manager at Sheffield Wednesday. It is a club with great traditions and a brilliant outlook for the future”. He also stated that he believes the squad to be more than capable of pulling away from the foot of the table and went on to state that “Sheffield Wednesday has made great progress off the pitch in the past 12 months and it is now my job to make sure that progress is mirrored on the pitch.