SHEFFIELD Wednesday look set to announce the signing of Michail Antonio today and move on to their next transfer target.
Manager Dave Jones admits that an injury to Chris Lines could hasten plans to introduce another midfield player.
Lines has a scan today after being stretchered off in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with West Brom and is likely to miss the start of the season.
Antonio was at Hillsborough - he left at half-time - and Jones confirmed that terms had been agreed with the winger. The Owls and Reading had already settled on fee - not disclosed, but almost certainly higher than the £700,000 that was recently rejected.
Jones said: “If it happens he comes with a big price and big expectation levels on him.
“He knows he’s got stiff competition, probably more competition than he had last season.
“If he does what he did for the club (on loan last season), I’ll be absolutely delighted.”
Asked whether the transfer would be completed today, the Owls boss said: “I would think so. We can get him in quickly and get him up to Scotland and give him part of the game there (at Kilmarnock on Wednesday); it will be ideal for us.”
Lines has admitted on Twitter that he is “struggling” for the start of the season and had felt the “worst pain ever” on Saturday.
Jones said: “With Linesy getting injured, it might propel another decision quicker than we thought we might have to make it. We’re building.”
He revealed that trialist midfielders Gorka Larrea and Marek Jarolim will play for some part of the Kilmarnock friendly.
Gary Madine and Kieran Lee have foot bruising and a hip niggle respectively and their chances for Wednesday are being assessed. Jones said it had not been worth taking any risks with them for the West Brom game.
Jones admitted that he knew there was a problem with Lines when the midfielder went down after simply passing the ball.
“We’ll get him assessed and see where we go from there. We have very good medical staff; I’m sure Smudge (physio Paul Smith) will be on the case now.”
Jones will see whether Larrea and Jarolim can make the same sort of impact as Nejc Pecnik.
He said: “We’ll have a look at them on Wednesday. That (a trial) is how we ended up with Nejc it’s not a bad way to go about it! We’ll give them as much game time as we can.”