Sheffield Wednesday secured a much-needed victory against Charlton Athletic with a late winner enough to ensure they picked up a deserved three points to lift some of the pressure on Garry Monk.
The Owls were largely dominant throughout the ninety minutes against Charlton, in what was a much-improved display from some of their recent performances heading into the game, and Monk’s side were eventually rewarded with Steven Fletcher’s 95th minute winner.
The win for Sheffield Wednesday meant they ended a seven match winless run in the Championship, which had been starting to see the pressure mount on Monk, and the Owls will now be hopeful that this win can help to spark a consistent run of form for them for the rest of the campaign.
Here then, we take a look at THREE things we learnt about Sheffield Wednesday following their win against Charlton…
Sheffield Wednesday finally end home goal draught
Heading into the game against Charlton the Owls had failed to score in any of their last four matches at home in the Championship, with their last goal at Hillsborough coming through Tom Lees’ effort in a 2-1 defeat against Cardiff City at the end of December.
For most of the game against Charlton it had looked like the Owls were once again going to fail to break down their opponents and find the breakthrough, with Monk’s side unable to convert their chances despite a really improved performance and finding visiting keeper Dillon Phillips in good form.
However, just when Sheffield Wednesday’s supporters would have been contemplating yet another frustrating and goalless home performance, Fletcher managed to head the ball home deep into stoppage time to end the goal draught and secure all three points for Monk’s side.
QUIZ: Can you identify these 15 Sheffield Wednesday players purely based on their date of birth and birthplace?
Fletcher more important than ever
Sheffield Wednesday hardly needed a reminder of the important role Fletcher has within their side, with the Owls having really struggled for form in front of goal during the striker’s absence with a knee injury he had picked up in their win against Brighton in the FA Cup at the start of last month.
The Owls have tried to replace Fletcher’s presence up front, and have even brought in Connor Wickham on loan from Crystal Palace in January, but Monk’s side were unable to find a dependable option up front to score their goals over the last month or so.
Fletcher had scored 12 goals for the Owls this season before his untimely injury, and Monk could have been worried that the injury lay-off might have affected the striker’s momentum, but he showed with his predatory instincts for the late winner that he will continue to be the goal scoring presence they need for the rest of the season.
Players show they are behind Monk
Heading into the game against Charlton Monk was under intense pressure, with the Owls have missed out on the chance to end their winless run by conceding a stoppage time equaliser in their draw at Birmingham City – and the Sheffield Wednesday boss was in need of a performance from his players.
That is something that he managed to get, with the Owls delivering their best performance since the turn of the year, and gaining control of the contest in the midfield and creating numerous chances in the final third, which saw them fully deserve their eventual breakthrough from Fletcher.
That level of performance shows that the players are still right behind Monk heading into the final stages of the season, and they will need to now go on an improved run of form to ensure that the pressure is lifted on their manager ahead of the summer.