Sheffield Wednesday: Owls boost for Madine

Gary Madine in action in an Under 21 game against Sheffield United before his loan move to Carlisle
Gary Madine in action in an Under 21 game against Sheffield United before his loan move to Carlisle
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Gary Madine will be all clear to play for Wednesday next season if required though his Carlisle loan stay has been affected by a curfew.

The striker missed games at Peterborough and Crawley because he had to be at home in the North-east after 7pm under the terms of his early release from prison.

But he will no longer be under curfew by the time the Owls’ pre-season work starts, it is understood.

Carlisle have been trying to assess whether or not they will be able to include him on Saturday at Wolves, where they must win to stand any chance of staying up.

His absence at Crawley on Tuesday was a blow as the Cumbrians only drew 0-0.

Madine was released in February after serving four months of an 18-month sentence for two assaults.

At the time he joined Carlisle in March, on loan for the rest of the season, it was hoped that his goalscoring ability would help his former club to win their fight against relegation. He has made five appearances and scored two goals, in a 1-0 win against Swindon - the team’s only victory in the last 13 games - and a 6-1 defeat at Preston. The Cumbrians lost 4-1 at Peterborough without him.

Wednesday, who were well off for strikers, allowed him to go out on loan to sharpen his match fitness.

Stuart Gray has said he can have a future at Hillsborough and it was hoped he would “hit the ground running” when pre-season begins.

To avoid relegation, Carlisle must win while Crewe and Tranmere lose and must see a four-goal swing in goal difference.

Oldham manager Lee Johnson has revealed that the Latics spoke to Madine and Wednesday about a loan deal after his release but decided against it.

The striker has another year left on his Hillsborough contract.

Meanwhile, Sondico, a brand of Sports Direct, have struck a deal to manufacture all the Owls first team, development squad and academy kit and leisurewear for the next three years.

Keeper Joe Wildsmith has been named as Academy Player of the Year, and Reda Johnson as Community Champion after his dedication to Norfolk Park School and £5,000 gift.