Play-offs still on Sheffield Wednesday’s radar, says Adam Reach

ALTHOUGH it did not yield a first derby win in five outings, Monday’s draw still keeps the season alive as a competitive entity for Sheffield Wednesday.

Derby battle: Owls' Adam Reach takes on former Wednesday striker Gary Madine. Picture: Steve Ellis

This was the post-match verdict of Owls winger Adam Reach following the Steel City stalemate with rivals Sheffield United.

Reach and his team-mates failed to reach the heights of their recent vibrant home performances against Brentford and Swansea City, but a doughty display at least reinforced the impression that Wednesday have cast aside the soft centre that they displayed in the latter stages of the Jos Luhukay era.

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The 0-0 draw extended the Owls’ unbeaten league run to eight matches – with six clean sheets in that spell – with Steve Bruce yet to taste defeat as manager.

Reach said: “If we had lost or maybe played in a way that was not good enough all the confidence we have gained and the atmosphere we have been building at Hillsborough would have maybe dropped.

“That would have been a shame and a bit of a stinger going into the last games of the season.

“But we have kept that and the fans have been excellent and they have seen how hard we have been working. We can go to Derby and have a good following like we do away. We are fully focused and confident that we can take three points.”

Wednesday remain six points adrift of play-offs with 11 games left and in need of a run of victories to propel themselves into the top six, but Reach insists that no one should be discounting their chances just yet despite Monday’s stalemate.

He added: “I do not think anyone is getting carried away and we know how difficult it is.

“We will have to win a lot of games and hope teams slip up. But that is possible and what the Championship is about. We are all very confident going into a run of fixtures which we believe we can take maximum points from.

“Once you get into April and you are there or thereabouts you can start looking at the table and maybe dreaming of getting to the play-offs.

“If we take three points at Derby it has been a really good run of fixtures and then we have got Bolton and Blackburn after that.

“Bolton are in a precarious situation, but will be dangerous as well. But all our focus is on Derby and the next game only.”