A year since some fans demanded his release, Jordan Thorniley is becoming indispensable to Sheffield Wednesday

Jos Luhukay manager

Thorniley signed for Sheffield Wednesday after his release by Everton two-and-a-half years ago.

Benik Afobe of Stoke City scores the opening goal during the Sky Bet Championship match between Sheffield Wednesday and Stoke City at Hillsborough Stadium on September 15, 2018 in...

For his manager, Jordan Thorniley was the best player as Sheffield Wednesday suffered a 2-1 defeat at Nottingham Forest last night, before a calf injury prematurely ended the defender's evening and left him a doubt for this weekend's trip to Aston Villa.

Should he recover in time, the centre-back will almost certainly make his seventh-successive league start for the Owls - nearly a year after it appeared he might not get one.

 

It's 361 days since Wednesday suffered *that* Hillsborough defeat to Sheffield United, after which Thorniley made a significant error in judgement by choosing to publicly congratulate one member of the Blades' side on his performance.

In the 21-year-old's defence, the United player in question happened to be a close childhood friend in David Brooks, although the backlash which followed led Thorniley to delete his Twitter account altogether, with some Owls fans even demanding his release.

Jordan Thorniley Twitter

Lucky for Thorniley, however, his relatively unknown status meant that most had forgotten about the faux-pas by the time the Everton-groomed player made his first-team breakthrough - ironically as a substitute in last season's second Steel City derby at Bramall Lane.

And although that initial opportunity arose amid an unprecedented injury crisis at Hillsborough, Thorniley is now keeping out the more experienced likes of Daniel Pudil and Michael Hector on merit - with his ogreish style proving a welcome addition to a Sheffield Wednesday defence previously on the timid side - while Joost van Aken should also struggle to oust the Warrington native once he returns to fitness.

For the fans, as well as Jos Luhukay, he is becoming increasingly indispensable.

What a difference a year makes.

How good can Thorniley become for Sheffield Wednesday?

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