Sheffield Wednesday: Milan right to favour stability

Gary Taylor-Fletcher signs autographs at Blackpool
Gary Taylor-Fletcher signs autographs at Blackpool

It came from a pal this week, with the poor run by the Owls having made Dave Jones’ management a talking point, just as it was 12 months ago after six successive defeats.

Forgive me for trotting out a cliche but managers in his position deserve a bit of patience. Milan Mandaric’s was rewarded when Wednesday showed promotion form in the second half of last season.

Jones, a very experienced manager, once again is doing the best he can with the tools available to him.

Who can tell at this stage how this season will turn out, on the field and in the boardroom?

The current boss has been a frustrated figure, having to operate within the financial restrictions placed upon him for whatever reason.

It seems obvious that he has not been able to land certain players that he wanted.

Take Gary Taylor-Fletcher: the free-agent striker trained with Wednesday for long periods but ended up signing a one-year contract at Leicester.

I have little doubt that the Owls would have signed him if they had been able to afford him. Maybe the same goes for Charlton and Millwall, other clubs with whom he trained this summer.

He made his Leicester debut last Saturday as a sub at Blackpool, his previous club, and played against Derby in the Capital One Cup this week.

The forward has said: “I was trying to find the right club during the summer. I was biding my time. I went to a few clubs to train. There are money situations at every club.”

Millwall splashed out on wages in the summer but had to offload players before bringing more in and baulked at the one-year deal that Taylor-Fletcher favoured.

Stephen McPhail did get a Hillsborough deal, if only until January. But he too may need a bit of time. The same goes for on-loan Roger Johnson.

Jones is having to operate in a market of players who have not been getting games, so the main way to get them match-fit is by thrusting them into matchplay straight away, which is what happened at Birmingham.

Once again Mandaric has expressed support for Jones, and is right to favour stability at this stage.