Sheffield Wednesday: Versatile Danny impresses Jones

Owls Danny Pugh
Owls Danny Pugh

IT HAS not taken Danny Pugh long to make his presence felt at Hillsborough.

In Sheffield Wednesday’s impressive victories over Charlton Athletic and Brighton and Hove Albion, the 30-year-old, on loan from Leeds United, has demonstrated his versatility by expertly filling in at left-back and on the left wing.

To accommodate the returning Jeremy Helan, Pugh, who is set to stay with the Owls for the remainder of the 2012/13 campaign, moved to the left hand side of the back four against Brighton as Dave Jones’ troops chalked up their sixth win in nine Championship outings.

A product of Manchester United’s youth system, Pugh marked a fine home debut by grabbing Wednesday’s second goal and creating the third from a corner.

Usually Miguel Llera takes the right-side corners but Jones decided to make a tactical change and put Pugh in charge of them on Saturday, allowing Llera to get into the penalty area.

“It allows us to put Miguel in there; normally he would take it because he has good delivery,” said Jones.

“Pughy does it on memory; he’s played at the top level.

“He gives us that composure. He’s helped the youngsters as well. He’s got that experience of playing anywhere on the left side. It gives us great balance. The only problem I had was which one I left out.”

Jones omitted Jermaine Johnson, pairing Leroy Lita with Michail Antonio up front. Pugh and Helan forged a promising partnership on the left as the Owls clinched their first win on home soil in 2013.

Having been frozen out at Elland Road, Pugh is relishing the challenge of helping Wednesday get out of the relegation dogfight.

Pugh said: “I’ve been lucky; the team has been improving and picking up some good results. That’s made the transitional period a lot easier for me.”

Pugh said he practised his set piece deliveries on Thursday and Friday.

“There are a lot of good targets to aim for in the box: some good sized lads, which makes it easier for the lad who is taking them,” he said.