Can Dave Jones mastermind back-to-back promotions to take The Owls back to the Premier League?
Ins: Michail Antonio (undisclosed amount), Chris Maguire (undisclosed amount), Rhys McCabe (free transfer), Nejc Pecnik (free transfer), Diogo Amado (free transfer), Anthony Gardner (free transfer), Joe Mattock (free transfer), Kieran Lee (free transfer), Chris Kirkland (free transfer)
Outs: Ryan Lowe (undisclosed amount), Rob Jones (free transfer), Clinton Morrison (free transfer), Jon Otsemobor (free transfer), Nathan Modest (free transfer), Richard O’Donnell (free transfer), Liam Palmer (loan)
Strengths: Dave Jones. Sheffield Wednesday fans were pondering a tricky play-off campaign in order to gain promotion to the Championship last season before Gary Megson was given the boot at the start of March.
But then Jones came in and inspired The Owls to win their remaining 10 games and draw two to clinch second spot in League One ahead of arch rivals Sheffield United. Automatic promotion has never tasted so good at Hillsborough. Will his golden touch continue to shine for The Owls in the Championship?
Weaknesses: The painful memories of their last stint in the Championship. Although Sheffield Wednesday spent five seasons in the second tier between 2005 and 2010, two of the campaigns saw the club involved in gruelling relegation scraps and, of course, the 2009/10 season saw them ride out their luck and slump into the third tier of English football once more.
Fans will be hoping that they don’t need to think about that trap door again throughout the rest of 2012 and into the new year.
Last season’s performance: Sheffield Wednesday always looked like they were going to be sitting in the top six of League One come the end of the 2011/12 campaign. However, nothing delighted fans more than when they outpaced local foes Sheffield United to clinch the league’s runner-up spot.
If they were a celebrity: Mickey Rourke in 2008. Just like Sheffield Wednesday have rebuilt after a time away from the spotlight and now look to be back with a bang, Rourke returned to his acting best in 2008 when starring in The Wrestler – his first critically-acclaimed role in years. They say too much of a good thing can be bad for you, after all.
You might not have known: Finishing second-best in League One isn’t all that bad.Southampton were runners-up in the third tier of English football in the 2010/11 campaign and are now in the Premier League.
The season before that, Leeds United finished in second spot and are now one of the top contenders to clinch promotion from the Championship in 2012/13. Can Sheffield Wednesday continue this positive trend?
Championship title odds: 22/1 with Paddy Power
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