Sheffield Wednesday: Who will win the battle for the Owls number one jersey?

Nobody is guaranteed a place in Jos Luhukay's Owls side...not even Keiren Westwood.

Thursday, 19th April 2018, 6:10 pm
Updated Thursday, 19th April 2018, 11:11 pm

Luhukay has warned the goalkeeper, who is currently sidelined by a groin injury, he will have to prove his worth if he is to regain the Wednesday number one jersey.

Westwood has not featured since December, handing Joe Wildsmith and Cameron Dawson the opportunity to fill in between the sticks.

Owls goalkeeper Joe Wildsmith

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Both have peformed well, with Wildsmith utilised in the league and Dawson featuring in the FA Cup fixtures.

Luhukay said: “I live not in the past, I live in the future. From the first day, it’s been Joe Wildsmith and Cameron Dawson.

“Joe is, in my time, now the No 1. He has made a fantastic progression in the last months, and made progression in his young career.

Owls goalkeeper Joe Wildsmith

“But we have also Cameron, who is a fantastic goalkeeper. I’m very happy with these young, talented players.

“Every player must work for his position, every player must hard work to come back to the squad and, of course, the last step is the first 11. But that is the future and that’s why I live not in the past.”

Republic of Ireland international Westwood has recorded an outstanding 52 clean sheets in 144 Owls appearances.

The goalkeeper, a bargain free transfer recruit from Sunderland back in July 2014, was named in the PFA Championship Team of the Year in his first year at Hillsborough and has twice been voted the club’s player of the year.

Westwood, contracted to the Owls until next summer, is reportedly on the radar of Southampton, Leeds United, Celtic and Rangers.

When asked about Westwood’s future, Luhukay said: “I cannot say anything about his situation in the newspapers, nobody has made contact with us.

“We are doing our job with the players available, and at this moment, Keiren has been unavailable for a couple of months.

“He is working intensively to come back, but what the future brings us, we will see.”

The Dutchman is confident Westwood will be ready in time for the start of pre-season training.

“He is working intensively to come back, but what the future brings us, we will see,” he added.

Luhukay, whose side entertain Reading tomorrow, has spoken of the importance of competition for places.

He said: “(The positions) must be always open for me.

“Everyone must have the intention to play in the first 11 and, whether it’s the goalkeepers or the players.

“Everyone has a chance to show their quality and see how things are at the end.

“But it is far away from us, we must first play our remaining three games, and then we aim for a good pre-season ahead of the new season.”