It was another busy, eventful summer transfer window - but Sheffield Wednesday can be pretty satisfied with their business.
The Championship outfit, last year’s Play-Off finalists, completed a large proportion of their recruitment drive at an early stage of the summer.
Five of their eight new faces arrived before the 2016/17 campaign kicked off: Steven Fletcher, Jake Kean, Almen Abdi, Daniel Pudil and Will Buckley. The Owls have since added David Jones, Vincent Sasso and Adam Reach to their ranks.
After falling at the final hurdle, boss Carlos Carvalhal stated his desire to further increase Wednesday’s quality and strength in depth.
“We don’t need a revolution, but we will try to improve the team,” said Carvalhal after their Wembley heartache. “We will try to be more strong next season.”
Wednesday have emerged from the transfer window stronger than before. Not only have the Owls strengthened every department of their team, they have also, crucially, not sold any of their prized assets. At one point, Fernando Forestieri’s future looked in big doubt after he refused to travel to Norwich City.
What Carvalhal has always said is he wants a minimum of two players per position. He feels competition for places is vital and stops complacency setting in.
The Owls may have failed to land a new left-back to crank up the pressure on Pudil but Reach’s versatility will be a big asset to them. He was a big hit on loan at Preston North End last term and is equally adept at playing left-back or left wing.
Although Belgian defender Marnick Vermijl has been offloaded, there are still some concerns over the size of the squad. Claude Dielna, Lewis McGugan and Sergiu Bus are surplus to requirements but remain on the club’s wage bill. Yesterday was their last chance to move the trio, and possibly Modou Sougou and Filipe Melo, on until January.
Mind you, some people will argue that Football League clubs need to be carrying larger squads with the emergency loan window having been scrapped. The last thing teams want is to be caught short.
If I have one minor criticism of Wednesday’s transfer dealings, it is that they could have moved quicker to plug their centre-back shortage. It cost them dearly at Burton Albion.
It is a situation which has now been resolved with the re-signing of Sasso on a permanent basis but why did it take them so long to bolster the position after it became clear that Glenn Loovens would require ankle surgery and face a lengthy spell on the sidelines?
Have the Owls spent their money wisely? I think so. But only time will tell if it will be good enough.