Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Football

Venancio has nothing to prove as Carlos Carvalhal returns to Hillsborough

The defender played only once under former Owls boss Carvalhal.

Sheffield Wednesday defender Frederico Venancio insists he has nothing to prove to former manager Carlos Carvalhal when the Swansea boss makes his return to the club.

After guiding the club to two unsuccessful Sky Bet Championship play-off finals the Portuguese left Hillsborough by mutual consent on Christmas Eve – only to reappear as Paul Clement’s replacement four days later.

Despite signing his fellow countryman in the summer, Carvalhal did not play Vernancio until what turned out to be his final game, the 2-1 home defeat to Middlesbrough.

Since then, under new boss Jos Luhukay, the centre-back has featured 10 times, but he does not bear Carvalhal any grudges.

“He was the one who brought me here and I am thankful for that,” he said.

“I understand I didn’t play because I needed some months to adapt to a different culture. I am not upset because of that.

“In the end my first game in the first team was (still) with him in charge.

“I am not negative against him, it is more the opposite – I am really positive.”

The Swansea manager claims he is returning to his “forever home” and is likely to get a warm welcome from fans, but Vernancio insists it is a case of business as usual for the players.

“It is not going to be special because Carlos is coming back to Hillsborough,” said the on-loan Vitoria Setubal defender.

“We will react normally and be there 100 per cent to win the game.”

Carvalhal sparked a remarkable turnaround in south Wales with six wins – including victories over Liverpool and Arsenal – and only one defeat in his 11 matches, but has said Premier League survival remains paramount.

Two of new Wednesday boss Luhukay’s four wins have come in the FA Cup and he is taking it seriously even if his opposite number has other priorities.

“I am not interested in that, I am interested in what we do as Sheffield Wednesday and we see the game as important,” he said.

“We can also think ‘OK, Tuesday, Millwall, which is more important?’. Your dream as a player, and also as a coach, is to play at Wembley in front of 90,000 people.

“There is a long way to go but when you get a chance to get to the last eight then you are close to the final.”

Press Association


From Belfast Telegraph