Sheffield Wednesday: Relieved Lee looks to future

Owls Kieran Lee tries to tackle Alex Mowatt.
Owls Kieran Lee tries to tackle Alex Mowatt.
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Kieran Lee has spoken of his relief to be playing again after seven weeks out with a groin injury.

The Sheffield Wednesday midfielder completed the full 90 minutes in Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Leeds United.

It was Lee’s first outing since the Owls’ goalless draw with Derby County on August 16.

He said: “It was great to be back out there; it’s what I have been aiming for. It’s been really frustrating but you can’t rush back because you could be out for even longer.

“I got through the whole game and there were no ill effects so I was pleased with that. I think a derby was the best kind of game to play because the pace of the game is so quick and you don’t get time to dwell.

“The adrenalin gets you through games like that anyway but when I came off, I felt absolutely fine.”

The groin problem Lee aggravated versus the Rams kept him sidelined for 10 matches.

The 26-year-old said: “Of course it’s been frustrating. No one wants to spend time in the treatment room. You just want to be out on the pitch helping the lads

“I’ve seen all the games and you can see how far the team has come this season. We are picking up points, we are doing well and there’s no reason why we can’t continue where we left off after the international break.”

Owls head coach Stuart Gray was delighted to call upon Lee’s services again.

“We know Kieran is a good footballer and can pick out a pass,” he said. “He was probably a little rusty and had to play on memory in the last 10 minutes.”

Tom Lees also impressed Gray. The centre-back produced a solid display on his first return to Leeds.

“Tom reads everything well,” he said. “He doesn’t flap at anything and makes the right decisions so it was nice to have them back.”

With Chris Maguire set to serve a one-match suspension against Watford after picking up his fifth booking of the season, Gray will have to make one enforced change to his starting line-up. Loan duo Royston Drenthe and Hallam Hope will pushing for a wing spot while Sam Hutchinson could be available for selection following a back injury.

Gray has explained why he left Hope out of the match-day squad versus Leeds.

“Joe Mattock passed a fitness test on the morning of the game so I just thought I needed Jeremy [Helan] and Claude [Dielna] on the bench,” he said.