Sheffield Wednesday: The past holds lesson for Owls

Keep it going: Dave Jones issues orders in the Reading game
Keep it going: Dave Jones issues orders in the Reading game

One of my pals had not missed a home game for 42 years - until last Saturday, writes Paul Thompson.

An occasion at the seaside was a bigger attraction, for once, after the Owls had struggled to reward the loyalty of him and thousands of others with a win.

In view what happened in the Reading game he has, naturally, come in for a bit leg-pulling.

Never mind. Who would have thought that the team would score five goals in a 44-minute period of play?

The only slight worry for me is that pre-Reading I heard several players say that just one win was all that was needed to kick-start the season and things would improve after that.

Nothing wrong in having a positive attitude, of course, and I do not think that Dave Jones will let anyone take their foot off the pedal now that victory has been achieved.

But, just in case, I draw attention to what happened to the team who were the previous holders of the club record for being unable to win from the start of a season.

Jack Charlton’s team won their 11th league game in 1977, but they lost the next one, 2-1 at Exeter, and managed only two victories in the 10 games that followed what had seemed a breakthrough three-pointer, 1-0 against Chesterfield.

It was a similar story for Danny Wilson’s side in 1999: after picking up only one point from the first nine games, they trounced Wimbledon 5-1. But they lost the next one, 2-0 at Leeds, and took only two points from seven games that followed the big win.

There have been occasions when one result really has turned out to be a turning point: look no further than last season’s 1-0 at Barnsley.

But it’s as well to bear in mind what can happen if noses are not kept to the grindstone - or if you come against a team who are better than the one you’ve just beaten.

Sorry if I appear to be put a damper on the buoyant mood but as Dave Jones so rightly said, games such as last week’s have to be enjoyed. Then it’s back to work on trying to improve. Last Saturday was great but Reading made too many chances for comfort.

One thing is for sure, My pal will not want to miss the next home game; it’s against Huddersfield a fortnight tomorrow after the international break.