IN A division where something akin to a revolving door policy exists when it comes to managerial appointments, Carlos Carvalhal today taking charge of his 100th Championship game is a notable milestone.
The Portuguese, a surprise appointment in the summer of 2015, is the third longest serving manager in the Championship and has 46 wins to his name along with back-to-back appearances in the play-offs.
One of those victories came against Neil Warnock, who will occupy the home dugout at the Cardiff City Stadium as Carvalhal reaches the century mark. And it is the approach of the Bluebirds under their wily manager that is dominating the thoughts of the Wednesday players ahead of the meeting between clubs sitting second and sixth in the fledgling table.
“He doesn’t hide the fact that is the way he likes to play,” said Ross Wallace, when asked about former Sheffield United chief Warnock. “He will get the ball forward quickly, get throw-ins in, corners, set-pieces, and we are going to have to stand up to that.
“That is just the way he plays and it is effective. He has done unbelievably well at every club he has been at and he has got Cardiff playing. I know they had a bad result the other night (when losing at Preston North End) but they are a tough team to play against.”
Carvalhal and Warnock have gone head-to-head three times as manager and each has one win to his name.
He doesn’t hide the fact that is the way he likes to play. He will get the ball forward quickly, get throw-ins in, corners, set-pieces, and we are going to have to stand up to that.Sheffield Wednesday’s Ross Wallace
Their first meeting came at Hillsborough in March, 2016, when Warnock’s Rotherham United claimed a shock 1-0 win thanks to a first-half goal from Matt Derbyshire.
Honours ended even last October in what was only Warnock’s second game at the helm of the south Wales club, while Carvalhal’s triumph over the 67-year-old came in the Good Friday return via a late strike from Fernando Forestieri.
Wednesday head to the Principality having moved into the play-off places for the first time this season in midweek. It is the start of a tough run of fixtures that includes home clashes with Sheffield United and Leeds United on consecutive Sundays, either side of a trip to revitalised Birmingham City.
“There are some tough games coming up but ones we are looking forward to,” said Wallace. “We can only concentrate on ourselves.
“We have got good players with a lot of experience, a lot of games in the highest level and a lot of players who have been in the Premier League as well.”
Victories over Nottingham Forest and Brentford since the international break have helped lift the mood around S6 after a slow start to the campaign.
“Performances could have been better in the first few games,” added Wallace. “I think the past few games we have started to pick it up, apart from maybe the first half of the last match (against Brentford) where we looked a bit leggy.
“We are sixth now, though it is very early. Having said that, it is good to be up there ahead of what is going to be another tough game.”