Sheffield Wednesday: Jon Newsome calls on Owls to hit the ground running next season

Carlos Carvalhal
Carlos Carvalhal

Star columnist Jon Newsome believes it is “vital” the Owls make a fast start next season if the club are to realise their Premier League dream.

Wednesday have failed to come out of the traps quickly in the past two campaigns.

Jon Newsome

Jon Newsome

The Owls picked up just one victory from their opening five outings last time around and bowed out of the League Cup at the first hurdle.

Ex-Wednesday defender Newsome told The Star: “It is absolutely vital they make a fast start. When you get points on the board in the opening two or three games and you are up there in the table, the confidence comes into the team and you kick on.

“For whatever reason, the Owls have not made great starts in the last two seasons and it is something they have to improve.”

Carvalhal will lead the Owls’ promotion charge, having signed a contract extension earlier this week. His deal was due to expire in June. The length of Carvalhal’s new contract has not been made public.

Carlos Carvalhal

Carlos Carvalhal

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The Portuguese chief has guided Wednesday to back-to-back play-offs.

“It would have been a bit harsh for Carlos to not be given the opportunity to manage the club again for next season,” said Newsome. “Everybody was disappointed with the result against Huddersfield in the semi-finals but they have to move on and put that disappointment behind them. They have to take stock now.

“I’m sure Carlos was probably disappointed with the performance in the second leg but they have improved from last season. They didn’t get to Wembley but they finished fourth in the league.

“What they have to do is learn from it. You can easily let the disappointment eat away at you and allow it to affect what happens moving forward.”

Newsome thinks the Owls have to improve the supply line to the strikers.

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He said: “I think we can be a better team with the players we have got.

“I don’t think we have realised our true potential.

“Carlos has got his way of setting the team up and how he wants to win games. Is he going to keep his wide men coming inside to play the possession-based game in and around our own half of the pitch or will he change how he approaches the game?

“My personal opinion is we could set ourselves up to be a little more attacking to cause opponents problems with the players we have.

“We have struggled to create lots of chances in games that we have dominated possession wise. Every striker that we have signed in the last three to four years suddenly seems to stop scoring when they join us.

“I’d like to see us get more crosses into the box and make the opposition feel uncomfortable.”

Defence and midfield are positions Newsome would like to see Wednesday bolster over the summer.

He added: “I think we need an experienced centre-back and a bit more height in the middle of the park.”

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