Sheffield Wednesday: What Owls boss Luhukay wants from new-deal Bannan this season

Barry Bannan
Barry Bannan

Sheffield Wednesday star man Barry Bannan has been told by his boss that he's so good he simply has to carry on scoring.

The midfielder has been the stand-out performer for the Owls during a run of three straight Championship victories which has lifted them to 11th in the table as they head into the international break.

In action at Reading

In action at Reading

The Scottish international, who last week signed a new contract, hit a wonder-goal against Millwall two weeks ago to inspire a 2-1 Hillsborough triumph and followed up with excellent displays in wins by the same margin over Ipswich Town and Reading.

That volleyed strike from outside the penalty area and the player's all-round form has led to manager Jos Luhukay setting the 28-year-old playmaker a target for the 2018/19 campaign.

"I hope he can make (score) four to eight goals a season," the boss said. "With his quality, he must score four to eight goals each year and also make assists. 

"He scored a fantastic goal against Millwall. I like Barry very much. He is a special player with fantastic technique. 

Jos Luhukay embraces goalkeeper Cameron Dawson after the win at Reading

Jos Luhukay embraces goalkeeper Cameron Dawson after the win at Reading

"It's difficult to say, is he one of the best players in the whole division? But, as his coach, I think he is."

Wednesday are ably led by centre-half Tom Lees but Bannan's influence has been so great that he 's having a skipper's effect on the side.

"He's a very good player with a good personality and a strong character," Luhukay said. "Barry doesn't need it to day 'captain' on his arm. He is one of our captains on the field. For me, it is very important we have those kind of players taking responsibility."

After a gruelling run of six games in 16 days, the Wednesday squad have been given a few days off during the fortnight's rest from league action before they return later this week to begin preparations for the September 15 home clash with Stoke City.

Attacking midfielder Adam Reach, another top performer, is pleased how the Owls have hit back from poor start to the season, when they lost two and drew one of their opening three matches, to lie only a point away from the play-off places.

"We have showed the fans that we are all together as a team and that the squad is united," he said.

Luhukay’s plan for comeback trio Hooper, Lee and Abdi