Sheffield Wednesday: Carvalhal welcomes busy fixture schedule

Carlos Carvalhal, the Sheffield Wednesday head coach, has welcomed the busy fixture programme in England.

Having reached the second round of the Capital One Cup, Carvalhal’s troops face the prospect of playing seven matches in the opening three weeks of the new season.

Carlos Carvalhal

Carlos Carvalhal

Tonight’s Hillsborough tussle with Reading will be their fourth match in 12 days.

Carvalhal told The Star: “Coaches and players prefer playing than training. I like that environment. The players don’t have a lot of time to recover but I would rather play all the time.

“We must manage the players and their conditions in preparation for their matches.”

The hectic schedule is nothing new to Carvalhal.

“When I was at Sporting Lisbon, we played in the Europa League and had a lot of matches,” he said. “It was the same at Braga so it is nothing new to me.

“At Besiktas, we played every three days. I remember I had three periods of seven games in 21 days so I understand exactly what we must do in these situations.”

Wednesday have been dealt a blow with the news that Keiren Westwood faces a spell on the sidelines after being kneed in the back against Ipswich Town. The Republic of Ireland international was taken to hospital and a scan confirmed he had bruised his kidney.

Lewis Price and Joe Wildsmith are in contention to deputise in between the sticks and Carvalhal is confident whoever steps in will do a good job.

“I’m very happy with all of our four goalkeepers,” he said. “Keiren [Westwood] is a fantastic goalkeeper but, at the same time, Joe [Wildsmith] has played well in all the matches he has played in. We are very happy with Lewis Price and Cameron Dawson is a very good goalkeeper.”

He may only be three matches into his tenure, but Carvalhal is loving the atmosphere generated on match-days.

“The British atmosphere in the stadiums is unique,” he said. “It is why English football is special.

“It is a magic environment and that is the big difference compared to other countries.

“The tempo is higher in this environment and the players feel that all the time and give their maximum.”

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