Sheffield Wednesday manager Darren Moore has revealed that it was a precautionary measure to substitute Lewis Gibson during the club’s EFL Trophy clash with Mansfield Town.
The 21-year-old made his long-awaited debut for the Owls in this particular fixture after recently being forced to watch on from the sidelines due to an issue with his calf.
After showing glimpses of his talent in the first-half of the game, Gibson was substituted by Moore at half-time which sparked speculation regarding the defender’s fitness.
Mansfield took the lead at the One Call Stadium in the 68th minute as Stephen Quinn fired past Owls goalkeeper Joe Wildsmith.
Undeterred by this setback, Wednesday levelled proceedings via an effort from Lewis Wing before Florian Kamberi netted the winner for the visitors in stoppage-time.
The Owls will be looking to use the momentum gained from this victory to seal a positive result in their League One clash with Bolton Wanderers this weekend.
Making reference to Gibson, Moore has admitted that he was always going to take the defender off at half-time in yesterday’s meeting with Mansfield.
Speaking to The Sheffield Star about Gibson, the Wednesday boss said: “We certainly felt we missed him when it was touch and go for him against Oxford.
“We felt tonight [Tuesday] was perfect in terms of getting some into him.
“He was always going to get 45 minutes and he did that.
“He wanted to carry on for 10 or 15 minutes after half-time but after we had that break I didn’t want him to freeze up on a cold night.
“His work was done so we took him off.
“He was calm and composed, he gives us that natural balance on the left-hand side, which we’ve spoken about.
“Hopefully, he’ll wake up tomorrow [Wednesday] morning and feel in good condition.”
This is an encouraging update from Moore as the club’s supporters would have been concerned about Gibson’s fitness due to the fact the defender has missed a considerable chunk of the current campaign.
Having seemingly emerged unscathed from the club’s meeting with Mansfield, it will be intriguing to see whether Gibson is given a chance to impress in Saturday’s showdown with Bolton.
When you consider that Wednesday have failed to keep a clean-sheet in their last six league games, it wouldn’t be at all surprising if Moore opts to make some alterations to the team that suffered a 2-1 defeat to Oxford United last weekend.
By producing an encouraging display against Bolton, Gibson could potentially retain his place in the Owls’ starting eleven for the foreseeable future.