Dejphon Chansiri is a wealthy, ambitious, hands-on chairman.
The Thai businessman, who celebrated his birthday yesterday, takes a keen interest in every department of Sheffield Wednesday. His commitment to the cause is undeniable.
Chansiri was a keen observer of the Owls’ Under-23s recent play-off success at Hillsborough. How many other foreign owners in the Championship go out of their way to watch the next generation in action? I bet not many.
In the wake of their play-off semi-final defeat to Huddersfield Town, Chansiri said: “Some things in football are never certain but one thing I can guarantee is that I will continue to do everything possible and in my power to help us all succeed.
“We will analyse every area of the business and improve it to ensure we are prepared for the next challenge ahead.”
Promotion to the Premier League remains Chansiri’s top objective but he wants to maintain the right balance between first-team success and academy development.
Both Joe Wildsmith, pictured right, and Cameron Dawson have made the step up and enhanced their reputations over the last two years. Chansiri hopes more youngsters follow suit.
The trouble is managers are becoming increasingly reluctant to give youth a chance. The average lifespan of a Championship boss is just over a year. Managers aren’t given enough time to make their mark and blood youngsters.
The pressure will be on head coach Carlos Carvalhal to deliver instant results next season. Expectation levels have soared at S6 following back-to-back play-offs. Will Carvalhal promote homegrown players or will he choose someone more tried and trusted? History largely suggests he will select a senio pro.
The onus is on the academy to provide better quality players who can cut it in the second-tier. It is up to them to make Carvalhal’s job as difficult as possible.
Carvalhal is not afraid to put his faith in fledgling talent but the quality has to be there.
George Hirst is progressing nicely and he would probably benefit from a loan move next season. It certainly did Sean Clare no harm being in and around a first-team environment and getting some minutes under their belts.
Losing academy manager Dean Ramsdale to Manchester City is a blow. Wednesday have made great strides under him and the right structures have been put in place for the future.
Chansiri is a demanding person and he will expect to see a gradual increase in their production line.