Sheffield Wednesday: Westwood sets sights on top-six tilt

Keiren Westwood
Keiren Westwood
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Owls number one Keiren Westwood is targeting a top-six push following a summer of change at Hillsborough.

Wednesday have brought in eight new players, including midfielder Lewis McGugan and highly-rated Portuguese forward Marco Matias.

Carlos Carvalhal, formerly of Sporting Lisbon and Besiktas, has also succeeded Stuart Gray as boss, bringing in three new members of staff.

As part of the new era under chairman Dejphon Chansiri, a new Desso pitch has been relaid at Hillsborough and a giant screen has been installed.

Westwood, speaking at Wednesday’s annual Owls in the Park fun day, said: “We are looking to have a good season. There has been a lot of changes and new faces. Hopefully we will gell and be okay.

“We had a good season last year. Hopefully we can get in the play-offs.”

The Republic of Ireland international is expected to take part in training today, having missed all three of the Owls’ warm-up matches due to sustaining a shoulder problem on the first day of pre-season training.

“The Championship is a real tough league,” he added. “Anybody can get beat anybody on their day and all the teams who have come up and down are really strong.”

Captain Glenn Loovens echoed Westwood’s sentiments, saying: “Our aim should be to get promoted. A lot of things have changed in the club. I think we are looking well.

“Everyone has to pull together. We know the division is extremely hard. We need all the supporters behind us.”

Asked why he decided to pen a new one-year contract this summer, the Dutchman said: “It’s the whole package. I have really enjoyed myself here with the lads and fans.

Ross Wallace, one of Wednesday’s new additions, said the fans were one of the big factors behind his decision to join the Championship club.

The winger said: “I wanted to come and play in front of these fans. I have played against them before and I have been amazed with how they come to support the club.

“The potential is there. It is a massive club. If we can get the stadium rocking and have a good start to the season, hopefully we will do well.”

Wallace, snapped up on a free transfer following his release by Burnley, believes the team are capable of competing in the upper echelons of the division.

“It (promotion) is realistic,” he said. “We have got good players and are possibly going to bring in some more before the end of the window.

“If we can get the fans behind us, we will have a good chance.”

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