REGARDLESS of whether Sheffield Wednesday manage to gate-crash the play-offs or not in these final few weeks of the season, Steve Bruce admits: “I could not have asked for any more from my players.”
The Owls head to Elland Road on the back of a stirring 13-game run under Bruce that has yielded 24 points and just one defeat.
A place in the top six is still possible, though victories for Aston Villa and Bristol City in midweek mean Wednesday are six points adrift with just five games to play.
“It has been a good few months,” Bruce told The Yorkshire Post. “The players have taken on what we have said and brought the motivation we demand.
“Of course, it helps when you get a couple of good results early on. That always lifts a new manager, whether he is on 800-odd games as I was or just starting out.
“In fairness to the players, they have bought into everything we are trying to do. I could not have asked for any more from my players.”
In fairness to the players, they have bought into everything we are trying to do. I could not have asked for any more from my players.Steve Bruce
Bruce heads to Elland Road today for what will be his 900th game in management. He is hoping for a repeat of one particular previous visit that stands out from his reign at Hull City.
“I had only been at Hull a few weeks when we went to Leeds,” he added.
“‘Elmo’ (Ahmed Elmohamady) had just signed and we looked a really good team that night.
“We won 3-2 and that gave everyone the belief we could achieve something. We had started the season at 50-1 (for promotion) so an early result like that was huge.
“Hopefully, we can get the same result this year. We have given ourselves a chance (of the play-offs). An outside chance, if we are honest. But it is a chance all the same. Beating Leeds United can only help those chances.”