Keep Calm After Cup Collapse
Wednesday bowed out of the Carling Cup with a 4-2 loss at Scunthorpe last night - but there's no need for the alarm bells to start ringing just yet.
The defeat at Glanford Park was disappointing - but it was probably more so due to the Owls' unbeaten start to the season and a (strangely) rare taste of defeat.
I probably won't be repeating this line again anytime soon (although hopefully I am) but I'd almost got used to watching Wednesday win, or draw, thanks to our good start to the season.
A defeat was just around the corner and it's probably good that it's come sooner rather then later - it highlights our weakenesses and allows us to hopefully address them.
I don't think too many Wednesdayites will be too downbeat following last night's cup defeat against the Iron, though there will be a good few hoping for a prolonged stay in the competition this season.
If Alan Irvine had fielded what he believed to be a full-strength Wednesday side for the clash then I could probably understand the frustration amongst Owls fans.
As it was, we made six changes and, with all due respect to the players that pulled on the blue and white stripes, it was almost a second string.
Whether Irvine was right to do this is a for another discussion - but his focus was clearly on saving some of his key men for the league clash at Hartlepool United on Saturday - and rightly so in my opinion.
It could, of course, come back to bite him in the bum if the Owls slip to defeat this weekend.
But it'll give some of the team a fitness boost ahead of the trip to Hartlepool and if we collect three points then it's very much job done - I'd have taken a defeat in the cup and victory in the league anytime.
I'd have taken a win in both, too...
But Irvine has built a squad that he believes is capable of rotation this season, and although far from comparing us to Chelsea, Manchester United or Manchester City, it's a squad that we need this season.
The addition of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy to the regular season, League Cup and FA Cup could give Wednesday a number of extra matches this season.
And it's important to use that squad - we're not in a position to pay players to sit on the bench, or not even in the matchday squad.
Irvine's done that, and it paid off in the victory against Bury in the last round.
Keeping those 'fringe' players in the frame keeps them interested, keeps them pushing for a regular starting role, and keeps those regular first-teamers fresh.
So last night's defeat isn't a total disaster and hopefully it's something that we'll have forgot about come 4.45pm on Saturday.
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