Mandaric backs Megson and insists commitment is total

SHEFFIELD Wednesday chairman Milan Mandaric hopes the signing of three more players this week has underlined his determination to take the club towards the Premier League.

Although Mandaric has made it clear that he will sell up if and when the right investor comes along, he is totally focused on supporting manager Gary Megson in the transfer market.

Arsenal striker Sanchez Watt, Newcastle United defender James Tavernier, and Blackpool defender Miguel Llera all moved to the League One club on loan this week ahead of the transfer deadline.

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Mandaric said: “It is my job as chairman to provide support to the manager at all times – which I have done in the past and will continue to do in the future.

“My commitment to this club is total,” he said. “And that is the least our fantastic supporters deserve. It is my responsibility, as the man at the top, to inject the resource and energy to ensure we are in the best possible position to compete for promotion to the Championship,” he said. “That is why we have brought the three new players into the club at this crucial time.

“That has given the manager and the squad and, I hope, the supporters a big boost at this vital time.”

Although the Owls are currently third in the table, a victory today will guarantee they move into second spot since rivals Huddersfield Town are not in action until Monday night.

“We are in a good, strong position in the table right now and we have to continue to build on the very significant progress we have made this year,” said Mandaric. “We are just two points away from the automatic promotion places and that is a testament to everyone who is working so hard at our club to help us get to where we all want to be.

“But we will be taking nothing for granted. Hard work on and off the pitch and making full use of the resource available is how to move a football club forward.

“There is a real good feeling around Sheffield Wednesday right now,” he added. “We are all together, we are all pulling in the right direction and, with the backing of the supporters, I can promise that we will do everything we possibly can to get this big boat to the other side of the water.”

The Owls now have six players on loan and Football League rules permit the use of only five in a matchday squad of 16.

Manager Megson said: “We shouldn’t be in this position but what’s happened to the club over the last few years has dictated the position.

“I have spoken to all six and told them that, at some point, one of them isn’t going to be involved because of the rules.”

Goalkeeper Stephen Bywater, winger Ben Marshall, and defenders Llera and Danny Batth look likely starters from the six against Leyton Orient – leaving Tavernier or Watt kicking their heels in the stands.