Sheffield Wednesday: Reda praises Helan class

Jeremy Helan is a class act who will get better as he gains experience, says the team-mate who has taken him under his wing.

Reda Johnson and Helan speak to each other in French on the pitch and have a good football understanding.

Jeremy Helan is congratulated on his goal against Millwall by David Prutton and Lewis Buxton

Jeremy Helan is congratulated on his goal against Millwall by David Prutton and Lewis Buxton

Johnson, aged 25, sees the man who is four years his junior as an outstanding and hard-working talent and not just a friend.

“He’s someone I have taken under my arm because he is younger than me,” says Johnson.

“It is good to have someone like him who gives 100 per cent every game.

“We know each other well. We speak French on the pitch. He is someone who likes to learn, and it is important to have someone who always wants to learn - then it becomes better, every game.

“He is a class player. He came from Manchester City’s academy. He scored a nice goal last weekend. I wish him all the best for this season.”

Dave Jones thinks that Helan at 21 is still learning and betrayed his inexperience last Saturday though he also hit a fine goal.

Millwall’s late, equalising penalty stemmed from a controversial decision after the left winger let an opponent get goalside of him.

Says the manager: “Jeremy will have learned from that; he’ll have to do, because he’ll be in that position many time. It’s unfortunate the linesman wanted to give it. Everyone says it wasn’t a penalty. But we shouldn’t have put ourselves in the position where he was able to give it.”

The two speak French because France is where their roots lie. While Helan puts down fresh roots after signing a four-year deal, his left-back colleague is thinking about his future now that he is in the last year of his contract - and Jones regards it as a ”big year” for him.

Johnson responds to that notion by saying: “For me, most important right now is the club.

“It is important that we don’t go down, of course. If we are safe, then we will see my future will be less important. But of course I am thinking ‘what shall we do?’

“The better we do, the more chance I will have of being here next season.

“Sheffield Wednesday are a club who have helped me to grow up. There is a lot of confidence in me here, from the club, the fans, the players, the manager.

“So I am very happy and very pleased to be here. You never know: sometimes you don’t have the choice.

“Most important now is trying to stay in this league or trying to go up, but starting to win games.”