"Over the years, Wednesday have had their fair share of great right backs – Frank Simek, Lee Bullen and (reluctantly) Derek Geary. These players never set the world on fire yet they always turned in a 7 out of 10 performance (well… Bullen was capable of the odd calamity). The same can be said for Wednesday’s current stalwart at right back, Lewis Buxton.
Signed for free from Stoke City in 2009 following a month loan at the club, it appeared Wednesday were getting a very versatile defender. Despite his current reputation though, his career didn’t start so well at Wednesday…
In his first full season, Wednesday were relegated to League One. For much of the latter part of that season, Preston loanee Eddie Nolan dislodged him from right back, Lewis was confined to the bench. Many were unsure if he would make the grade at the club. The fans just didn’t seem to have any confidence in him… neither did he. There was no obvious flaw, he just wasn’t good enough. Tommy Spurr was rated more highly than him!
The following season in League One, Lewis went onto make 30 appearances for the club and he finally started to find his feet through a series of assured displays. Despite it being a poor season for the Owls, they could always rely on him. Defensively sound as well as offering support going forward, you knew what you were going to get from him. Despite this, it was unsure whether he would be offered a new contract at the end of the season. After the final game of the 2010-11 season at home to Exeter, which Wednesday lost 2-1, it appeared a tearful Lewis was saying goodbye during the end of season lap of ‘honour’. Rumours were rife that he may return to his first club Portsmouth and once again, Lewis’ future was uncertain.
Fortunately for all parties, Gary Megson offered him a 2 year contract in the summer of 2011 which he duly signed. He went onto make 39 appearances during the promotion winning season, with arguably his most telling contribution being that he crossed the ball to Chris O’Grady to score THAT goal against United at Hillsborough. He started to feel like Wednesday was his home with the feelings being mutual from the fans.
This season Lewis has once again been ever present at the back for Wednesday. Despite the Owl’s early season failings defensively, his ability has never questioned despite being in a higher division. He has been able to get further forward in recent games with a defensively minded midfield being preferred by Dave Jones. This was seen in the away game to Watford where a Buxton header was unfairly judged to not have crossed the line.
Once again though, Lewis’ Wednesday future is in doubt with his contract being up at the end of the season. He has come out publicly and said that he wants to extend his contract and that he is attached the club. Many fans, like myself, will be very keen for Mr Reliable to stay. At 29 years old, he’s still got many good years ahead of him, years I hope he spends at Wednesday. He can’t leave anyway… the fans haven’t perfected his song yet;
On the right, on the right, Lewis Buxton
On the right he will run past you,
On the right, on the right Lewis buxton,
Lewis Buxton is the white Cafu"
Follow Ben on Twitter @benjaminwier
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