Dom Howson's Sheffield Wednesday column: Why signing Kadeem Harris would be a good piece of business for the Owls

You have to go back to 2014 for the last time the Owls had blistering, explosive pace in their ranks on the wings.

Thursday, 20th June 2019, 12:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 20th June 2019, 14:34 pm

Michail Antonio was lightening fast and capable of causing havoc against opposition defences in the Championship. He could turn a defender inside out with his speed and dribbling ability. It was just consistency Antonio found hard to come by at that stage of his career.

Jeremy Helan was no slouch either on the left hand side. The trouble with the Frenchman was that he did not know how to effectively use the main weapon in his armoury. His lack of end product in the final third irked fans, coaching staff and managers alike.

Before Antonio and Helan there was Jermaine Johnson. He was an enigma but another speed merchant. The Jamaican would be unplayable one game and anonymous the next. His temperament could also be suspect in the heat of battle.

The likes of Antonio and Johnson could be frustrating figures, but they gave Wednesday's forward line pace and variety. When on song, Antonio and Johnson could terrorise defences and excite the crowd.

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Their ability to run in behind allowed the Owls to set up tactically different away from Hillsborough and play on the counter attack. It also meant opponents were reluctant to play a high defensive line against Wednesday.

Pace is essential in the modern game and Owls chief Steve Bruce quickly recognised after taking over in January that he needed to address that glaring deficiency in his squad. He added quick, athletic and dynamic players in Dominic Iorfa, Achraf Lazaar and Rolando Aarons.

Aarons showed glimpses of his quality in possession on the left flank. I remember him producing a dazzling second half performance in the away triumph at Bolton Wanderers. There were other moments of promise. It is just unfortunate for Aarons and Wednesday that a hamstring problem prevented him from making a bigger impact.

Now the Owls have turned their attentions elsewhere. Kadeem Harris looks set to join on a free transfer following his release by Cardiff City.

Should Wednesday complete a deal to sign Harris, they will be signing a quick, direct and hungry player with a point to prove.A combination of injuries and falling out of favour at Cardiff limited Harris to just 18 appearances in his last two seasons in South Wales. His career has stalled and he will view the next move as a chance to rebuild his reputation.

Assuming there are no late hitches and Harris moves to South Yorkshire, the Owls will be hoping he can go somewhere towards solving their pace shortage in the wide positions.