Date:Friday March 20 2009
Wednesday striker Francis Jeffers goes into Saturday's clash with Swansea City on the back of two goals in two games, and no doubt hoping it's the start of the 'real' Francis Jeffers at Sheffield Wednesday.
The former Everton and Arsenal man has failed to live up to his reputation as a 'fox in the box' since his arrival at Hillsborough from Blackburn Rovers in August 2007.
But two goals in his last two outings in the famous blue and white stripes have rekindled some hope that the tricky frontman has got over his injury setbacks and is ready to kick-on as the 20-plus goals a season man that boss Brian Laws is craving for.
The former Everton youth product can no longer put the blame of failing to find the back of the net down to his injury problems, with Jeffers a rare exception to the recent injury problems at Middlewood Road.
Indeed, after a first horror season at S6 in which he made just a handful of appearances, Jeffers has been eased back into the first team this season and has avoided any further setbacks - touch wood!
But the goals simply haven't been coming.
The 28-year-old has made 26 appearances for Wednesday this season, but has only managed to find the back of the net three times - simply not enough for a player who has undoubted talent and is also, undoubtedly, one of the higher earners at the club.
Different strike partners haven't helped, in fact all of Wednesday's attacking options have failed to settle in to any kind of striking partnership, Marcus Tudgay being the pick of the bunch with 13 league goals to his name this term.
Jeffers is likely to line-up with Tudgay against Swansea this Saturday, desperate to see some kind of consistency in his game, and to see some consistency in his goalscoring, to finish the season on a high.
Can he be that man who's at the top end of the Championship goalscoring charts for Wednesday next season?
He undoubtedly has the talent, Arsene Wenger even spotted that after all, but the question is, does he have the desire to prove his doubters wrong as he enters what are arguably the best years of his footballing career?
Only time will tell, and the Owls' remaining games this season could well determine if Jeffers puts himself forward as the 'main man', the 'fox in the box' for Wednesday in the number nine shirt for next season, and the rest will follow.
Saturday is a big game for the Owls' number nine, that's for sure.
Date:Friday March 20 2009
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