AFC Wimbledon v Sheffield Wednesday: Owls manager Darren Moore happy to keep tinkering

WHEN a manager or head coach is referred to as a ‘tinkerman’, it is often said in a derogatory fashion.

Should that term be thrown in the direction of Darren Moore, then the Sheffield Wednesday chief is unlikely to mind one bit and take a different slant and provide some positive reasoning behind it as well.

At various stages of 2021-22 so far, Wednesday have played a 4-3-3 system, variants of a 4-2-3-1 formation and operated with a three-man defence.

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The unavailability of certain players for spells of this season has been one factor as to why Moore has not settled upon one formation. The main one is to stop opponents being able to second guess’ the Owls from a tactical perspective in games.

Different formations: Owls manager Darren Moore. Picture: Steve Ellis

The Owls chief makes no apologies for that fact, but will be mindful that only consistency in terms of good results will stop in becoming a negative point of discussion among supporters.

Moore said: “We have changed formations and we have seen some exceptional performances in pockets.

“There are times when we have had to battle away. We have seen those different aspects, but this happens when you formulate a new team.

“We want to keep trying to improve every week in the season. You want it overnight, but it doesn’t always happen, it takes work. That is exactly what we are doing, we are working hard to get performances and keep the results going.

“We are playing against opposition that are trying to stop what we want to do. We will keep working and keep striving to perform well.

“Every game is different, we have seen different types of games this season. Last Saturday was an example where we dug in and we were resolute and did very well.”

Back in the day, Wednesday’s trips to face Wimbledon south of the River Thames would invariably mean a physical and mental examination against direct and intimidating opponents.

The present-day Dons may culturally embrace the club’s historical links to the ‘Crazy Gang’ days of old, but their footballing ethos is somewhat more nuanced.

Today sees the Owls visit the Dons’ new-look Plough Lane stadium for the first time and while Moore is full of admiration for the renaissance of Wimbledon, he is conscious of the importance of his side not providing another glorious chapter in the South Londoners’ modern-day history.

Moore commented: “It’s been a great story in terms of where they have got to, with a new stadium and everything else.

“From when they were to where they have risen to is a wonderful story.

“I congratulate them and Robbo (Mark Robinson) for a great job there.

“It Is a different style of play from just a few seasons ago and they are moving in the right direction.

“Robbo wants to play football, but there is no given way to play. They play some lovely football and in the last couple of years, they have changed their identity on the pitch and they go about it in a nice manner.”