Sheffield Wednesday man says the squad would be ‘more than happy’ with this managerial appointment
Sheffield Wednesday skipper Barry Bannan has said that the Owls squad would be “more than happy” to see Neil Thompson continue as manager until the end of the season.
The Championship strugglers are on the hunt for a third permanent manager of the season, following the dismissal of Garry Monk and the 45-day reign of Tony Pulis.
Thompson has taken temporary charge of the club since Pulis’ departure last month and has won all three matches in that time.
After winning back-to-back games in the league against both Middlesbrough and Derby County at Hillsborough, a Covid-hit side beat Exeter City in the third round of the FA Cup while he isolated at home.
The former York City and Scarborough coach is expected to lead Wednesday again this weekend when they return from their enforced break with a fourth-round trip to Premier League side Everton.
Speaking ahead of that match, Bannan told The72 that the squad have enjoyed playing under Thompson and would happily see him remain in situ for the rest of the season.
“We’ve got massive respect as a team for Neil Thompson,” he said. “He’s been here years, we know him really well. He’s obviously done really well in the games he’s been in charge of so far, so if it happens it happens.
“I think the boys would be more than happy if Tommo was here to the end of the season, but that’s out of our hands.
“Tommo’s done really well and if it’s his chance to shine and get the job we’d be 100 per cent behind him; if someone else comes in then it’s the same as well, we’ll work as hard as we can for the new manager if there’s going to be one.”
Bannan, who is close to agreeing a new contract to remain with the club beyond the end of this season, also opened up on how Thompson has made such an impact in his time leading the group.
He took over a side which had won only once in 10 matches under experienced boss Pulis, who failed to get a winning tune from a squad which began the season slowly under Monk.
Yet he managed to double Pulis’ haul of victories in his first four days in charge with back-to-back wins, even briefly lifting them out of the relegation zone for the first time all season.
The Sheffield Wednesday skipper said there was no easy answer for how Thompson had turned things around and put the club on a three-match winning run, including the Exeter success.
But he said: “The big thing he’s done is try to lift the spirits, and he’s just let us go and express ourselves. If we lose, so be it, but lose having a right go at it and putting our own dent on the game.”