Sheffield Wednesday: Ambitious Chansiri takes pride in Owls progress
Chairman Dejphon Chansiri has expressed his delight over the progress Sheffield Wednesday have made this season.
Carlos Carvalhal’s charges have enjoyed a fine campaign, booking a Championship Play-Off spot at the end of last month.
The Owls’ reward for finishing sixth in the regular season is a Semi-Final meeting with Brighton and Hove Albion. The first leg of the tie will be staged at Hillsborough on Friday, with the second tussle taking place on Monday, May 16. Wednesday sold-out their 2,047 ticket allocation for the trip to the Amex Stadium yesterday.
Since finalising his takeover last year, Chansiri has invested lavish amounts of money on transfers and wages to help turn Wednesday into serious promotion candidates. The Owls splashed the cash to bring forwards Fernando Forestieri, Gary Hooper, Lucas Joao and Marco Matias to S6.
Initially, Chansiri set a two-year timescale on leading the club back into the Premier League. As things stand, there is a chance Wednesday will achieve Chansiri’s objective 12 months ahead of schedule.
Regardless of what happens over the coming days, the Thai businessman is thrilled with how the team have acquitted themselves in the second-tier.
In an extract from his Brighton programme notes, Chansiri says: “I outlined my ambition to return our great club to the top tier when I completed the takeover in February 2015 so to be in this position, only three games away, just 15 months later gives me a significant sense of pride and achievement.
“But taking Sheffield Wednesday to this point of the season could not have been done without the commitment, knowledge and diligence of everyone connected to our club.
“From the players and coaches to the staff around Hillsborough and Middlewood Road, and not least our unbelievable supporters, this journey so far has not been possible without you.”
The Owls chief has echoed Carvalhal’s sentiments, saying Wednesday have put their plans on hold for next season until they know what division they will be competing in.
“It goes without saying that all our efforts are now 100 per cent focused on these two games against Brighton,” stressed Chansiri.
“We cannot look beyond these play-off matches right now because when you start to look too far ahead, problems can begin.”
To read Chansiri’s column in full, pick up a copy of Wednesday’s bumper Brighton programme. In the one-off souvenir, there will be an unprecedented 132 pages, featuring pieces with Carlos Carvalhal and Sky Sports News presenter David Garrido. The programme is priced at £5 and will be available around all areas of the ground.
Wednesday recently scooped the coveted ‘Best Value For Money’ programme in the Championship as voted by the Northern Programme Club (NPC). It is the third time in the last four seasons that the Owls have topped the pile in the annual vote from the NPC.
Meanwhile, Wednesday are set to release further tickets to home fans for Friday’s tie. Following talks with the local authorities, tickets for the The West Stand lower, North Stand West end and the restricted view area in the Kop will go on general sale at 9am today.
Tickets are priced at £20 for adults, £15 for over 65s and young adults (17-20s), £10 for under 17s and £5 for under 11s. Fans can purchase two tickets per ID number online or by telephone only. There will be no sales from the ticket office.
For more information, ring 0370 0201867 (option 1).