Carvalhal opens up about ‘emotional’ return to Sheffield Wednesday

Swansea City manager Carlos Carvalhal was back at Hillsborough on Saturday (Picture: PA)
Swansea City manager Carlos Carvalhal was back at Hillsborough on Saturday (Picture: PA)
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Sheffield Wednesday remain the last Yorkshire team in the FA Cup and must face Swansea City in a replay to clinch a quarter-final spot against either Tottenham or Rochdale – and the chance to chase Wembley redemption.

Standing between both is former Owls boss Carlos Carvalhal – in charge when Wednesday lost to Hull City in the Championship play-off final at Wembley two seasons ago – who made an emotional return to Hillsborough on Saturday in the goalless draw.

It was a very emotional moment. I must say thank you to Sheffield Wednesday, the way the fans received me, the staff, manager and players.

Carlos Carvalhal

The game will be best remembered for the standing ovation for Carvalhal on the pitch after the final whistle.

Carvalhal helped transform the Owls into a Championship contender – taking them to back-to-back play-offs. They narrowly lost out out to Hull two years ago, before being edged out on penalties against Huddersfield Town last term.

Carvalhal left Hillsborough just before Christmas and was replaced by Dutchman Jos Luhukay.

“I almost cried after the game, when I spoke to the fans,” revealed Carvalhal.

“It was a very emotional moment. I must say thank you to Sheffield Wednesday, the way the fans received me, the staff, manager and players.

“That’s the beauty in football, something really positive, not negative.

“Wednesday fans are unbelievable. I am very proud and this moment is something I will never forget in my life. I am happy because it’s only eight weeks since I left. It was not an easy moment for me, when we broke the contract, very hard days.

“When you look back, remember everything you leave in the club, you are proud. You know when I come back in five or 10 years, the people will receive me even better than now.

“Coming back after just eight weeks, this type of reception made me very proud. I was the happiest manager in the world.”

Wednesday striker Jordan Rhodes, who pulled out of the game on Saturday morning due to illness, is a doubt for tomorrow’s Championship trip to Millwall.

Luhukay said: “Normally, Jordan was in the team. But yesterday he was very suck and ill.

“In the morning, he was on his way here, but the doctor decided he should go home, he was not good.

“We now have three days (to recover), but I am not sure if he will be with us for Tuesday.”