Sheffield Wednesday: Owls chief pays tribute to fringe men

Owls head coach Carlos Carvalhal
Owls head coach Carlos Carvalhal

Boss Carlos Carvalhal has hailed two of his fringe men for refusing to sulk after the Owls edged a step closer to the Championship’s play-offs.

The Portuguese was full of praise for his players following Sunday’s 4-1 comprehensive win over Wolverhampton Wanderers, describing their performance as “fantastic”.

While Carvalhal was reluctant to single any individuals out, he praised the contribution of substitutes Atdhe Nuhiu and Jeremy Helan.

As part of Carvalhal’s squad rotation policy, Nuhiu dropped to the bench after struggling to make an impact in Wednesday’s surprise defeat to MK Dons.

The giant striker came on and showed his mettle, providing the assist for for Gary Hooper’s second goal in Owls colours in added on time.

Helan added extra pace and directness after he was introduced in the second period. It was the utility player’s first outing in five matches, having failed to shine as a starter against Blackburn Rovers last month. Helan was withdrawn at half-time versus both Rovers and Huddersfield Town.

Eight of Helan’s 15 appearances have come as a sub this season.

“Jeremy Helan did not play so well in the two games that he had a chance to play,” admitted Carvalhal. “But he went on the pitch very angry and very happy to play against Wolves.

“He played very well. These kind of things are important and that we continue with all the team focused.”