Sheffield Wednesday head coach Carlos Carvalhal has called on his players to show their fighting spirit to kickstart their season.
On the day he announced he wanted a personal hearing to contest a Football Association charge for his touchline behaviour, Carvalhal called on his players to show “heart and soul” on the pitch.
The Owls head to Norwich City tomorrow, languishing 12th in the Championship, on the back of a seven-match unbeaten run.
But five of those have been draws, including four successive stalemates. The points dropped have seen the Owls slip to eight points adrift of the play-off places.
A late goal by Michael Dawson denied Wednesday victory against Hull City last weekend and led to a 2-2 draw.
Carvalhal believes their second-half display at Hillsborough that day is now the benchmark.
“We know what we can achieve and we know our quality,” said Carvalhal. “The most important thing is to win games.
“The positive is we are seven unbeaten, two victories and five draws in this period. Victories make a big difference and we are working hard to win games.
“The commitment, heart and soul we showed against Hull showed we are fighting in the competition.
“I’ve had an opportunity to talk with my players. I will tell you what I said exactly: ‘This is Yorkshire. This is Sheffield. Sheffield is a city of workers, this is a city that the people work very hard to win the life, and the people want to recognise these values on the pitch’.
“What we did in the second half [against Hull] is exactly what we want from Sheffield Wednesday since the beginning.
“It’s the heart, it’s the commitment, it’s the quality, it’s not being afraid of anybody.
“I gave congratulations to my players about the second half, because this is the way, this is exactly what we want, this is the brand of our team.
“We took risks. I know exactly what the Sheffield Wednesday fans want. They want to win, of course, but they want to see a team run and fight and with a big commitment inside the pitch.”
Carvalhal faces an FA hearing after being sent to the stands against Hull for complaining about the decision not to award a penalty.
He said: “I was sent off because I went out of my technical area. That is a reality. That is a fact.
“It’s about my passion and my job and to what I’m doing. I will explain this.”