Sheffield Wednesday’s Championship safety within our grasp says Adam Reach

Sheffield Wednesday have shown to themselves they can escape Championship relegation, and to their rivals that they are not giving up, says Adam Reach.

Sheffield Wednesday's Adam Reach (right) and Cardiff City's Tom Sang battle for the ball at Hillsborough on Monday. Picture: Isaac Parkin/PA

The wing-back scored twice in Easter Monday’s 5-0 win over Cardiff City, the Owls’ biggest victory for seven years.

Without it, it could have been a very bad day for the club, who went bottom before their evening kick-off thanks to Wycombe Wanderers’ 3-0 win at Rotherham United, with Coventry City’s victory widening the gap to safety.

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Later it emerged they are under a transfer embargo for filing last season’s accounts late.

Adam Reach celebrates with Sheffield Wednesday team-mate Jordan Rhodes after scoring their side's fourth goal against Cardiff at Hillsborough. Picture: Isaac Parkin/PA

But the nature of the win, featuring outstanding goals and a first clean sheet in 11 games, should fill them with belief. As Reach cautioned, it will count for nothing if they do not follow it up at Queens Park Rangers on Saturday. The 28-year-old reckons the Owls, who saw Joost van Aken return from injury for the under-23s yesterday, need four or five wins from their last seven games to stay in the second tier.

“I think it was just a matter of time before everything clicked,” he said. “We put in some good performances against Barnsley and on Friday against Watford and it just clicked on Monday.

“We took our chances and once you do that you feel like you can take every chance you get. We pretty much did that.

“I’m especially proud of the way we came out in the second half [3-0 up] and dominated. Lots of people will say the Wednesday of old would have dropped off and that game would have been a lot tighter but we pushed on, got the fourth and the fifth [goals].

Sheffield Wednesday's Adam Reach (centre) celebrates after scoring his side's fifth goal at Hillsborough. Picture: Isaac Parkin/PA

“I think we take belief more than anything – belief that we can score goals, we can keep clean sheets and we can win games against good teams. In order to do that you need to keep clean sheets and you certainly need to score goals.

“We need to win four or five more games to get out of it.”

Victory moved Wednesday level on points with Rotherham, who have three games in hand, narrowing the Millers’ goal-difference advantage to two. After Birmingham City’s 0-0 draw at Brentford last night, the gap to safety is seven points. Birmingham have played a game more than Wednesday and Coventry, who are 20th.

Reach is hoping the manner of Monday’s televised victory puts pressure on those teams.

“It will show if anyone thought they could take us lightly they can’t,” he said. “I’m not saying Cardiff did but they caught us on a very good day. Any team that can score five against another team in the Championship is someone to be aware of.

“We’re hoping we catch some teams out that maybe don’t have as much to fight as us.”

Under manager Darren Moore – who has missed the last two matches with Covid-19 but had video chats with his players before the match and at half-time and was in constant communication with the bench – Reach believes the club has a brighter future regardless of what division they are in next season, though he does not yet know if he will be part of it. He is one of a host of first-teamers out of contract this summer.

“Nothing’s really changed from when [then-manager Tony] Pulis said a few months ago there was discussions,” said Reach.

“That’s for the club and my representatives to discuss. I’m sticking to what I know, playing football. The most important thing is to win and get out of this situation then things like that will hopefully take care of themselves.

“I’ve loved my time here and I don’t want to be challenging at the bottom but I firmly believe the squad can get us out of this and move the club forward.

“I’m 100 per cent confident he [Moore] can do that, hopefully in the very short term but realistically if things don’t go the way we want I think he’s the right person to bring this club success and that positive mindset back, that positive relationship with the fans.”

Asked if he wanted to stay even if the club went down, Reach replied: “If the worst comes to the worst the club might take that decision away. From a selfish point of view it’s for me to decide what’s best as a professional and as a person. I’m fully concentrated on what I can do for this club.”

In the short-term, the Owls, who expect to be without Moore at Loftus Road, cannot make signings but are confident the matter will be resolved by the summer.

As a matter of policy, the Football League will not confirm reports 10 clubs were placed under embargoes for not filing their 2019-20 accounts last month, a month earlier than required by Companies House, who have granted extra time because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Luton Town, Cardiff and Coventry have said they are in that situation but Huddersfield Town are thought to have already come out of their embargo.

The Owls, who were under embargo in the summer of 2018 and had a “soft” embargo under Steve Bruce, did not even file their 2018-19 accounts until this March, eight months late, and it has had a knock-on effect.

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