Meet the opposition | Sheffield Wednesday

22nd September 2023
First team
Sheffield Wednesday

As Swansea City prepare to host Sheffield Wednesday at the Stadium, we take a closer look at the Owls.

What's their story?


Wednesday are in their first season back in the Championship after being promoted to the second tier in dramatic fashion at the end of last season.

The Owls overcame a four-goal deficit to progress on penalties from their semi-final against Peterborough, before Josh Windass' goal late in stoppage time saw them beat Michael Duff's Barnsley team in the final.

Having been a top-flight mainstay for a number of years, they came close to returning to the Premier League twice under former Swans boss Carlos Carvalhal – in 2016 and 2017.

It is now 22 years since the Owls last appeared in the top flight, and over 30 years since their only major trophy – the 1991 League Cup. They went on to reach the FA Cup and League Cup finals two years later, losing both to Arsenal

How's their form?

Wednesday are without a Championship win so far this season, having taken two points from their first seven games.

The Owls played out a draw against Middlesbrough in midweek, while their sole win in any competition came via a penalty shootout win over Stockport in the League Cup.


Who's the gaffer?

Xisco Munoz

Xisco Munoz. Spaniard Munoz was appointed Owls boss in the summer following Darren Moore's departure in the wake of that dramatic play-off success.

Munoz has previous experience of the Championship having helped Watford secure promotion in 2021, after succeeding Vladimir Ivic in the Vicarage Road hot seat.

The former Valencia, Real Betis, Levante and Dinamo Tbilisi winger retired from playing in 2016 and held a number of assistant manager roles before taking charge of Tbilisi, from there he would soon find himself leading the Hornets back to the Premier League.

Who's the captain?

Barry Bannan

Barry Bannan. The Scot was given the armband at the start of the 2020-21 season, replacing Tom Lees as skipper.

The experienced midfielder has racked up over 350 appearances for the Owls during over seven years at Hillsborough.

The winner of 27 Scotland caps, Bannan has been a integral part of the Owls team throughout his time at Hillsborough, bringing a bustling energy and the ability to create or score a goal out of nothing.

The 33-year-old, who started out at Aston Villa, has also played for Derby, Blackpool, Leeds, Crystal Palace and Bolton during his career.

Who are the key men?

Josh Windass

Striker Josh Windass wrote his name in Owls’ folklore earlier this year when he netted a dramatic late winner to help Sheffield Wednesday edge out Yorkshire rivals Barnsley in the League One play-off final.

Son of Dean, a former striker who scored a memorable play-off winner of his own for Hull, Windass was initially on the books at Huddersfield, but did not make a first-team appearance for the Terriers before joining Accrington Stanley via a short stint with Harrogate Railway Athletic.

He scored 23 goals in three seasons with Stanley before a move to Scottish giants Rangers, who had completed their process of climbing back up through the divisions, followed in 2016.

Windass was the club’s joint top-scorer with 18 in his second season at Ibrox, and joined Wigan in the summer of 2018, spending two years with the Latics including a loan spell with Wednesday.

That move become permanent in the summer of 2020, and he has since scored 30 goals in 111 appearances.

Republic of Ireland international Jeff Hendrick has joined the Owls on loan from Newcastle United and become an immediate starter.

Having first emerged at Derby County, Hendrick signed his first pro contact with the Rams in 2010 and went on to make his first-team breakthrough the following year.

He went on to make more than 175 league appearances for the Pride Park club, suffering play-off disappointment with them in 2015 and 2016 before joining Premier League Burnley.

Over the course of four seasons with the Clarets he helped them to a seventh-place finish in the top-flight and Europa League qualification.

Hendrick joined Newcastle in 2020 but found game time limited.

He had a loan spell with QPR towards the end of the 2021-22 season, before spending last term with Reading.

Colombian goalkeeper Devis Vazquez was an eye-catching summer addition for the Owls as he joined on loan from Serie A club AC Milan.

The 25-year-old came through the youth system at Paraguayan club Guarani and went on to become their regular first-choice keeper.

In addition to seeing league action, he also featured in the Copa Libertadores, before making his switch to Italy in January of 2023.

However, he did not make an appearance for the Rossoneri over the second half of last term, and will be eager for game time at Hillsborough.

To that end, he has already made seven appearances in all competitions for the Owls since his arrival.