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Right… Let's Be 'Avin Yer

Right… Let's Be 'Avin Yer

**Warning: this may be one of those irritating ‘rally call’ articles…**

Supporting Sheffield Wednesday is a rollercoaster. Granted, I’m sure it’s the same for fans of other clubs, but I’m not worried about them right now. I’m worried about us, and being on the cusp of our best chance of promotion to the top flight for 20 odd years - despite a strange, and unnerving, sense of worry and frustration creeping through the fanbase. The unease is threatening to undermine the team spirit, unity and enjoyment created last season, that seemed to ebb from fans to players, and vice versa .

Barry Bannan, despite his amazing hair and being one of our better players for 20 odd years, has been getting it in the neck. Adam Reach has had it. Jack Hunt gets it almost every other game (temporarily eased up following that wonder cross).
Ross Wallace gets it pretty often... Although... He should be forever beyond criticism following this:

Forestieri gets it. There’s a few that don’t – Lees, Westwood, Hutch, Lee (pretty much) and the 2 new forwards, for now. But that’s pretty much half of the spine of our team which get over the top criticism from our fans, despite us being where we are in the league. Oh I forgot. Carlos is getting it too.

Now fair enough, we live in a world far removed from the last time we had a team fighting for promotion to the top league, made up of quality footballers trying to win games by playing attacking, passing football (excluding last season). There was no Twitter, Facebook or fans forums for those who rely on a moan, or to vent their vitriolic nonsense when a player hits a below par run of form, to cheer them up at the weekend. The famous barracking of Sheridan in the 91 promotion season provides a decent-ish comparison to the criticism Bannan has taken of late. The difference being, a few letters to the Green Un, and the players obviously hearing a bit of frustration and booing from the crowd, surely didn’t have the same potentially hard-hitting overall effect as the hysteria that currently follows a defeat (or even a hard-fought win). On this forum, it remains fairly balanced, which is all good. But players must read some of the stuff spouted on social media, and who knows what they make of it. I know it would piss me right off if I’d just given my all for Wednesday, and there is not one player in the squad who could be accused of not giving their all, barring one early silly-lad episode. It’s all fine to have opinions, and that’s what it’s all about – it’s the over-the-top, extreme stuff that gets to me. And I imagine the players, though I may be completely wrong.

I’m being careful with the social media stuff. I only read Owlsonline and Owlstalk, and see a fair bit of the stuff on Facebook. As said, Owlsonline is fairly balanced, Owlstalk has many brilliant posters but a large amount of attention seekers and those on the wind up, which dilutes its quality. Facebook, blimey, don’t get me started. I’m not on twitter, but that sounds as barmy, if not more so, than Facebook. The bigger the platform, the louder the negativity and the need to be noticed seems to be. Which is a shame, as the non-hysterical types tend to get drowned out. The recent example of Forestieri’s wife feeling she had to respond to tweets was beyond embarrassing. I know it’s a minority of idiots, but it’s a loud minority, with social media giving these clowns the platform to shout and rant.

I know there’s counter arguments, and that yes, professional footballers are very well paid, should be thick skinned, and turn a blind eye. To be fair, they do – there’s not that many retaliatory stories knocking around, considering the amount of grief they get. The story of that Blunt boxer heading round to someone’s house to confront them is, thankfully, rare. And I know that it’s just a reflection of society and being able to instant message anything you like. But it’s not just the social media stuff. The atmosphere at Hillsborough is generally very subdued, and has been for a while (I know this isn’t a problem just for us, I recently asked a question on here and generally got the response I expected, with many fans being unhappy about low key atmospheres. It’s not a new thing. e-atmospheres-whats-yours-like.264629/#po st-8521128).

Villa on the opening day was immense, but I’m struggling to think of another game that has been anywhere near as good. Yes, we haven’t clicked as we remember them last season – but in fairness, there were similar blips last year, and again players hitting, and being criticised for, poor patches of form. Particular over-criticism of Kieran Lee stands out in the memory, when he hit a run of poor form and was rested. Yet there’s a bit of selective remembering going on as to how good we were in my view. It was around this time last year that Carlos came out with a bit of a rallying cry to the fans, along the lines of supporting the players when they made a mistake. He hasn’t felt the need yet this season, but it must be irking him.

There was talk of Bannan and the ‘putting his hand to his ear’ thing as the groans and grumbles turned to shouts and boos against Blackburn on Valentines Evening. I love you Barry. I love your fabulous hair. Never forget it.

I know we haven’t quite hit the heady heights of last season, and not really met the raised expectations that fantastic season created. I know we’ve spent big money on strengthening the squad. I know it hasn’t quite clicked, and it’s frustrating as hell. I know we haven’t seen some players hit the heights we hoped they would. But we are 7 points, that’s 7 points, clear of 7th. With a game in hand. The two major moans from last season, that we couldn’t play against the top teams, or win dirty, have been replaced this season, with the complaint that, effectively, we aren’t blowing teams away. Now we’re at the ‘our luck will run out soon’ stage. But I’m not having that. We were incredibly unlucky at times earlier in the season, and if any season suggests that luck evens itself out over the course, this is the one, epitomised by the Birmingham games.

I remember a game against Blackpool a few years ago, when we were really shit, and I saw how a crowd could genuinely turn a game. One nil down at half time, the crowd went barmy with their support. Wednesday played a blinder and won 2-1 in the 2nd half.

That’s what I’d love to see now. Forget the frustration, and how we could sort it if only we had Carlos’ job. We could be on a roll; why not join in, support it, back the players and enjoy it. We’re in a great position, and a positive vibe around Hillsborough could see us do what we couldn’t quite manage last season. I suppose I’ve blabbered on a bit now, when I could have just posted a youtube vid of that proper fit hottie Delia shouting ‘Let’s be Avin Yeeeerrrr!’ Apologies if you’ve read this far,hoping for a glimpse of her cheerful drunken ways. But I can’t bring myself to put the link in. You can always Google it for yourself if you’re that intrigued.

Enjoy the run in; they’ve got me wondering, again…

Cheers.... Pollhammer3.  

Unread article 20/02/2017 at 07:45


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