SIX things we learned from Sheffield Wednesday 2 Leeds United 0

Gary Hooper celebrates again...get him signed up
Gary Hooper celebrates again...get him signed up

It wasn't the prettiest of victories, and where was the customary cracker of a goal? But Sheffield Wednesday's success over Leeds United gave Owls fans plenty of reasons to be cheerful.

Here are SIX things we learned from the match...

Steve Evans wasn't happy

Steve Evans wasn't happy

Owls must get Hooper signed up

Quite an obvious way to start but if proof were needed as to how important Gary Hooper could be should Wednesday manage to keep him at Hillsborough, it came on Saturday. Hooper was criticised in his opening few games as Owls fans wondered why the club seemed so determined to bring him on board. In fairness he's been managed perfectly by Carlos Carvalhal. The head coach eased the striker into the team such was his lack of sharpness, but once that natural instinct kicked in again, there's been no turning back. His second goal against Leeds, latching onto a Marco Silvestri slip-up was poaching at its best.

Wednesday are blessed in the goalkeeping department

Keiren Westwood is one of the best in the Championship. Joe Wildsmith, as Carvalhal is at pains to point out, has the ability to be the best. But both were unavailable on Saturday and up stepped Lewis Price. The Welshman pulled off a terrific save to deny Souleymane Doukara in the first half and show that they have quality from first to third choice.

Referee Anthony Taylor had a memorable game

Referee Anthony Taylor had a memorable game


That clean sheet was welcome

Carvalhal may not be bothered by clean sheets - he keeps telling us it doesn't translate in Portuguese - but it does no harm to rack up a few. Keeping teams out brings confidence all across the team. And that takes the pressure off too, even for strikers who may then not feel the weight of expectancy so much, knowing that their team mates at the back are keeping them out at the other end.

There's more than goals in Fernando Forestieri's locker

The diminutive forward has built a reputation for scoring great goals of late, but his all round game came to the fore on Saturday. Against a team who's owner, Massimo Cellino, famously stated that "he didn't have the right mentality" needed to play for Leeds, Forestieri was superb... hard-working, unselfish, tenacious and all summed up by his battle to win the ball and eventually set-up Hooper scrappy first goal. One wonders what kind of mentality Cellino actually wants.

The ref was right...eventually

Let's get one thing straight...referee Anthony Taylor had a stinker of a day and neither side really benefited. Fernando Forestieri should have won a penalty when he was pulled down by Guiseppe Bellusci off the ball; Sam Hutchinson should have been booked before he eventually was, and then came the big one. What was going through Taylor's mind when he told Leeds to take their free kick while Forestieri still hadn't left the pitch after being substituted, is anyone's guess. To his credit, he took advice and reversed the decision to give the goal after Liam Cooper had 'scored' from the set-piece. We'll stop short of giving him too much credit though, because he brought any criticism on himself.

The pitch shouldn't be in that state, should it?

Having spent so much on it, Owls owner Dejphon Chansiri must have looked at the state of the pitch on Saturday and wondered where his money went. The rain and frost in recent days looked to have taken its toll on a surface which appeared very patchy in places. From a Wednesday point of view, hopefully it's not a sign of things to come and the situation worsens because the pitch has played a significant role in the team's superb home form this season.