Club poised for new scouting system

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ALAN Irvine, the Sheffield Wednesday manager, has revealed the club will look to set up a scouting department after the January transfer window has closed.

At the fans forum last month, new chairman Milan Mandaric pledged to invest funds in creating a worldwide scouting system.

Since becoming the Owls boss a year ago, Irvine has been operating without a chief scout. It has meant Irvine, assistant manager Rob Kelly and first-team coach Billy Barr have devoted hours of time trekking up and down the country to check out players and opposing teams.

Irvine, who travelled to Peterborough last night to watch them entertain Brentford, admits it is the first time in his managerial career he has cash at his disposal to strengthen his playing squad.

He said: "It (having money) is a different situation to what I have been in before. It brings its own demands, particularly in the situation we are in where we don't have a scout.

"All the work has had to be done by myself and the staff and we are happy to do that. But I can always do with extra help and that is something Milan is aware of. He knows we need to set up a scouting department in time.

"Right now, it is not our main priority as it is important we make the most of the transfer window.

"I have not had a conversation in detail with Milan about the scouting system but it is something we will look at."

The upside of Wednesday recruiting scouts is it will allow Irvine to attend matches and assess potential transfer targets in greater detail.

"In my opinion, there is nothing better than watching players in the flesh and seeing them with your own two eyes," he said.

"I will continue to do that even if we gets scouts in.

"Obviously, if we have a scouting department, then that will free me up to go watch specific players."

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