Solutions to the kind of concerns being experienced by both Sheffield clubs are seldom straightforward. But here’s this column’s attempt at a very simple summary.
As a general observation, United are attempting to play too much football and Wednesday too little. In the first case, the ball is taking too long to arrive at the business end. In the second, it is getting there too early minus any sticking power.
Where things get more complex is the question of accident or design. The United management’s pure passing policy is studied and deliberate whereas Wednesday’s Dave Jones, who is also coming under increasing scrutiny from fans, would probably argue that he wants his players to have the courage to get the ball down and pass it. In which case, he will feel the need to impart the message in stronger terms.
Certainly the local derby with Doncaster a week on Saturday will loom large on an unsettled landscape unless the Owls make a winning breakthrough at fellow strugglers Birmingham this weekend.