Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Barry Bannan has defended his teammate Adam Reach following some criticism from fans for his performances this season.
The Scottish midfielder has claimed that the ex-Middlesbrough winger is being targeted as a victim of his own success after being a star performer last season.
As mentioned, Reach was one of Sheffield Wednesday’s top performers in the 2018/19 season and scored some absolutely brilliant goals, including his wonder strike against Leeds United (via YouTube).
The 26-year-old was a major contributor, scoring eight goals and providing seven assists (Transfermarkt) but he hasn’t quite managed to hit the same heights this term.
That has led to some fans getting on his back, but Bannan has launched a staunch defence of his teammate and said that the players really value him in the dressing room.
Speaking to the Sheffield Star, the Scot said: “Adam scored a lot of unbelievable goals last year, which most players wouldn’t be able to do. He’s not going to be like that every game, or he wouldn’t be here [at Sheffield Wednesday], he would be somewhere else.”
“A lot of people forget about his work rate and what he does off the ball. He is a wise head, has a lot of experience.
“He gets bad press, but that’s probably because he was scoring all these ‘worldie’ goals last season. There’s not many players capable of scoring all those goals he scored last year. We appreciate him as a team-mate, and in the changing room.
Bannan is right, there are not many players capable of scoring the amazing goals that Reach did last season.
When you look deeper into the stats, the criticism of Reach this season does look quite harsh. Whilst he hasn’t got a hat full of goals with just one to his name so far, he does have three assists which is the joint-most in the squad alongside Bannan and Kadeem Harris (Transfermarkt).
He is one of the Owls’ most creative talents, and according to the Sheffield Star he has created the third most chances of any player in the squad (17) with only Bannan (31) and Harris (20) having more to their names. Indeed, as per WhoScored, only two players are making more key passes (1.1) than him on average a game while only Steven Fletcher averages more shots over the same period.
Reach was benched in Wednesday’s most recent match against Swansea City (Transfermarkt), he will be hoping to break back into Garry Monk’s starting 11 in the coming weeks and change the opinion of some supporters.
Sheffield Wednesday fans, what are your thoughts on Adam Reach’s performances this season? Let us know in the comments below…
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