Sheffield Wednesday chief gives an update on pursuit of Chelsea defender Michael Hector
Sheffield Wednesday remain hopeful of re-signing defender Michael Hector.
The 26-year-old established himself as a firm fans' favourite while on loan from Chelsea last season, making 41 appearances and scoring two goals.
Hector was a model of consistency, particularly in the second half of the campaign, as the Owls clinched a 12th-placed finish. He formed a strong partnership with skipper Tom Lees at the heart of the rearguard and his ability to play the ball out from the back also earned him plenty of plaudits. It was no surprise that Hector scooped a string of player of the season awards.
Hector enjoyed his time in South Yorkshire and at the back end of the 2018/19 campaign expressed his desire to join the Owls on a permanent basis.
But despite holding talks with Chelsea's hierarchy, Wedesday have yet to reach an agreement regarding Hector's future. Their hopes of bringing Hector back to S6 could be boosted over the coming days should Frank Lampard be confirmed as their new manager.
Steve Bruce, the Owls boss, said: "We would love to bring him (Hector) back. There is no disputing that.
"It is simply can we bring him back? There goes the problem. He's Chelsea's player. If he was available on loan tomorrow, I would take him back in a hit.
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"If Chelsea demand big money for him, we are not in a position to do that at the minute.
"We will keep trying on it. I will do anything I can to bring him back but at the moment Chelsea are without a head coach. If Frank (Lampard) gets it, make no mistake, I will be straight on the phone to him."
Wednesday have agreed deals to sign free agents Kadeem Harris, Moses Odubajo and Julian Börner - as soon as their soft transfer embargo is lifted. The trio met their new team-mates for the first time on Friday and attended Owls in the Park on Sunday. Around 15,000 Wednesdayites flocked to Hillsborough Park for the club's annual community fun day.
Speaking at the event, Bruce said he is targeting another four new faces to bolster his squad ahead of the 2019/20 season.
On the prospect of adding to his team, he said: "There are still three or four plates spinning, of course.
"If you still look at the balance of us with Jordan Rhodes coming back, the balance of the squad is still lop-sided. There will probably be sacrifices made in that department to generate a bit of income for us so we can spend it in other areas.
"However, there is no disputing that we have still got the nucleus of a very, very decent team.
"For me, we are still three or four players short of where we need to be."