JAMES O’Connor is hoping for a happy New Year in the USA as he puts behind him an anti-climactic 2011.
The Wednesday midfield player who is set to leave next month for an American club rates his leg injury as one of the worst of his career.
Injured in training after playing what has turned out to be his final game for the Owls, against Leyton Orient on November 26, he saw the stitches removed only last week.
He says: “I don’t know when I’ll be playing again, but hopefully it won’t be too much longer.
“This has been one of the worst injuries I’ve had. I had to have it cleaned out. They did a good job; the stitches came out at the end of last week. It should start to heal.
“It was such a deep cut that they left quite big gaps in between the stitches, because they were worried about infection.”
He is still only 32 and wants to play for as long as possible, but has coaching qualifications and wants to get into coaching or management eventually.
“The club and supporters deserve real success,” he said. “It’s a special club. I’d like to thank everybody for their support since I’ve been here.”
Fans should not assume that because accounts show a £15.8 million profit for the year ended May 31, Gary Megson will have millions to spend.
The profit is a paper figure and is a partly a legacy of the fact that the Owls were made up of two companies, Sheffield Wednesday Football Club Ltd and Sheffield Wednesday plc.
In accounting terms, the club owed £21.4m of its total debt to the plc but this portion was wiped out as a result of Milan Mandaric’s takeover of the club, a deal that made the plc defunct. So the £21.4m became an accounting profit for the club, though no money changed hands. Player exits did bring in £1.3m.
When those two figures are added together, and a £6.8m operating loss is deducted, it leaves a ‘profit’ of £15.8m.
As well as the moving of the £21.4m on the balance sheet, a figure of £25.6m owed to banks was wiped out as a result of Mandaric’s takeover.
Actual cash in the bank on May 31 was £1m. Net assets are shown at £11m - the amount the club is worth when liabilities have been deducted. The previous year it was worth minus £30m. The Owls say the financial position is now “robust.”